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Drive safe this winter.

As we make our way through the colder months, the wet and icy weather combined with dark mornings and evenings can make winter driving conditions considerably more treacherous.

We’ve pulled together some advice from the experts to try and minimise the risks.

Wet weather
According to the Highway Code, stopping distances will at least double in wet weather compared to stopping in dry conditions. This is because your tyres will have less grip. If you’re caught in a downpour, make sure you give yourself plenty of distance between you and the car in front. Ideally 4 seconds, say Brake.org.uk so that you can anticipate any hazards.

Driving in Fog
If your visibility has been reduced because of bad weather, then ensure you slow your vehicle right down as it will take longer to react to any hazards. Be wary of fog patches, whilst you might think that the fog has cleared, it’s quite likely to suddenly rear its muggy head again. The Highway Code says you must use your headlights if visibility has been reduced to less than 100 metres. Fog lights can be used but be mindful to switch these off as soon as your visibility returns. They can potentially dazzle other road users and obscure brake lights.

Ice and Snow
If you can avoid travelling when there is ice and snow on the ground then do. Journeys should just be essential. If you really must hit the Lancashire roads then ensure you take great care and allow extra travel time for your trip. Pack an emergency kit bag to pop in the car containing de-icer, scraper, an extra layer of clothes, warm food and drink just in case your vehicle gets stuck or breaks down. It’s also a good idea to have your phone fully charged and let someone know you’re en route. Finally, before you set off, your car windows must be clear of any ice and snow and all mirrors demisted.

Stopping distances can be ten times greater than in dry weather say the Highway Code so ensure you keep your distance from the car in front. Drive at a slow speed in as high a gear as possible taking care to accelerate and brake extremely gently. Take corners cautiously and steer gently and steady to avoid skidding. If you begin to feel a skidding action, ease off the acceleration and steer into the direction of the skid until you regain control.

Driving in strong winds
Living on the Fylde Coast we’re often exposed to strong winds from the coastline. The expert advice when faced with driving in these conditions is to slow down. There’s no telling when a sudden gust of wind can get under the car.  This would affect braking and handling. Make sure both hands are on the steering wheel to maintain a steady grip.

Be especially aware of caravans and high-sided vehicles which are most vulnerable in windy weather. Remain at a safe distance and overtake with caution.  Be ready for a potential sudden gust as you clear the side of the vehicle.

Additional Advice

To read further advice on driving in adverse conditions, visit the Highway Code on the Department of Transports website. Alternatively head over to Brake, the road safety charity for additional information.

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Office:
01253 760979

Mobile:
Anthony 07912 684830
Will          07801 071950
Opening Times:
Mon - Fri 9.30am - 4.00pm.
Weekends by appointment only