12 Days of Manual: Winter driving safety


Piper Hansen

Many students at Manual are either new or somewhat experienced drivers. With winter and the heavy blankets of snow coming soon, students should be aware of tips, tricks and safety precautions they should take when driving in snow or on ice.

  • Accelerate and decelerate slowly when driving in light to moderate snow. If there is moderate to heavy snow, driving should be avoided completely.
  • Don’t stop if you can avoid it. Knowing your brakes is a big part of keeping the inertia of the car up to avoid the car from stalling.
  • Driving at slower speeds on the highway and normal roads will decrease the severity of collisions if they were to occur. Driving at slower speeds can also stop your car from skidding.
  • In case of a skid, steer into, not against, the skid. This will help the car realign and then steering will become easier.
  • Knowing whether or not your car is an all wheel drive or a four wheel drive will help you determine the speed at which you can drive and accelerate in multiple inches of snow.
  • Get to know the situations that you will be driving in. Being aware of the driving conditions, traffic patterns and roads you will be driving on will prevent skidding and possible wrecks.
  • Black ice can form when it’s raining or if the temperatures reach below 32℉. The ground temperature can cause precipitation to freeze on contact, causing a thin layer of ice to form on roads. Most cars have thermometers and will be able to show whether or not black ice has the potential of forming.
  • Communicate with a parent, guardian or friend of your route, initial destination, final destination and time of arrival in all situations in case of emergency.
  • Above all, avoid driving after or during heavy snowfall and in low temperatures.