If you have lived in Calgary for quite some time or have just moved to the area, you will quickly becoming accustomed to braving the icy, winter roads that are produced from the relentless winds and snowfalls during this time of year. No matter where you live in Calgary or the surrounding area, you will have to take precautions when driving at any time of the day.
- Take your time: Do not rush around to get somewhere. Ensure that you leave in plenty of time to account for slower traffic due to road conditions. Accidents happen when people are in a rush and take chances.
- Leave extra space between you and other vehicles: Try to leave extra room between you and the vehicles ahead of you to allow that much more space if you come upon slippery conditions. Having that extra buffer can mean the difference between getting to your destination safely or having a fender bender.
- Pause and take a second look: Take the extra time to pause at intersections and stop signs to ensure that no vehicles are coming in the other direction and may be sliding through uncontrollably. You could avoid being hit if someone happens to hit their brakes and slide through an intersection that you are sitting at.
- Equip your vehicle with snow tires: Having tires specifically made for snow and ice can mean all the difference in your ability to handle the winter roads this time of year.
- Ensure that your visibility is not blocked: Make sure to clean your windshield free of any snow or ice and that your wipers are in good working order. Clear away any snow from your vehicle to avoid blowing snow which can hinder your visibility.
- Use your headlights even during the daytime: The use of headlights can give you the extra visibility needed for other vehicles to spot you on the road.
- Do not use cruise control: This can be a severe hazard if you hit an icy patch or begin to slide out of control
- Use your common sense: While this may seem easy enough, often you may need to be reminded of the road conditions and time of year and be aware of your surroundings in order to make good defensive driving decisions.
Try to carry around a safety kit for the winter time in your vehicle that will be there for any situation. It could include a blanket, shovel, flares, booster cables, candles, or anything else you may find useful if you find yourself in an accident or stranded on the side of the road.
For more information about safe winter driving tips, visit Transportation Alberta