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Driving Snow?

Too many car accidents this winter

If you need to cross to the left or the right while changing lanes, or beginning a turn, angle the car through the ruts and drifts of snow. Think of the way you should steer a boat or canoe diagonally through high waves, rather than hitting the wave head on, or you are likely to capsize.

Speed is essential, that is slow speed, to driving safely in snow. For one thing, you want to avoid using your brakes to slow down -- brake only once you have slowed sufficiently to safely complete the stop. Test your brakes several times when you start out, and when you are slowing down on a straight stretch, and there is room ahead and behind. Touch the brakes with gentle pressure, you may find they lock up quickly, telling you how much room you need to stop. The faster you go, the more time and distance you will need to decelerate, and if you are driving during rush hour, you are not going to have much space. Go slow, but keep pace with the traffic.

Plan your route with alternatives in mind. Erie Boulevard is broad and fairly level compared to Genesee Street. Even if your car can make it up a steep hill, there may be cars in front of you who cannot. It is a no go situation when the cars ahead of you are sliding sideways, and/or trying to back down the hill; avoid hills if you can.

One thing I delight about in about retirement is that I do not need to risk life and limb driving in nasty weather. I sympathize with what it is like, and I remember well the angst, frustration, and demands of winter driving. Drive safely and intelligently now, and know spring is on its way.

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