How does driving differ from warm weather to cold weather?

Getting ready for winter in Washington involves many different things. One of those items is preparing your car for winter driving. Being so far north, snow is expected and so is bad weather in general. Knowing the road conditions is important just as is getting your vehicle ready for winter.

In order to stay safe and keep all your passengers and yourself safe on the road, you need to protect them and yourself by driving more carefully and slower than you normally would in another season. Allowing extra time to get where you are going while the weather is inclement is a good idea. There is nothing that you need to arrive at that takes the place of avoiding that accident that you could have if you weren't being careful and going slowly. It only takes one careless and unprepared driver on the road to bring traffic to a bad ending.

Not only should all drivers go slower, but they also should accelerate much more slowly. Have you ever been on the road with another car and they are not being safe? It happens all the time. One minute you are driving carefully, and the next moment, someone has hit you and you are injured. If he or she only would have taken the time and effort to drive carefully and get his or her car ready for winter, these type of accidents might be avoided.

Something as simple as having traction tires on your car can prevent a car crash. It needs to be an eighth of an inch thick where the tread is located and should be labeled M&S, have a Mountain/Snowflake symbol or be All Season tires. Of course, adding chains to your tires automatically makes them traction tires. Getting in touch with your local tire dealer so they can help you is important this time of year.

Getting ready for winter weather should be on the top of every driver's list. Getting into a car accident that isn't your fault can be injurious and can damage your car. Knowing your options after an accident is also very important.

Source: Washington State Department of Transportation, "Prepare for winter driving," accessed Dec. 22, 2015

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