RCMP winter driving tips

Ice, snow, slippery highway-driving in winter conditions is challenging and frustrating

Ice, snow and slippery highway-driving in winter conditions can be both challenging and frustrating. Here are some helpful tips from Clearwater RCMP/Central Interior Traffic Services and ICBC to keep you and your loved ones safer on the road.

Hydroplaning

Hydroplaning happens when the tires lose contact with the road surface and float on a film of water. If you find yourself hydroplaning, ease off the accelerator and keep steering in the direction you want to go. Avoid braking.

Black ice

During the winter, temperatures change quickly, which can cause unpredictable road conditions. Although the road may look the same, black ice can form unexpectedly and may not be visible.

Black ice is commonly found on roads with shaded areas, bridges, overpasses and intersections where car exhaust and packed snow freezes quickly.

If you drive over black ice and start to skid, ease off the accelerator, and look and steer smoothly in the direction you want to go. Don’t brake-this will make the situation worse. You may need to repeat this manoeuvre several times before you regain control.

Adjust for conditions

Potholes can be another hazard during the cold and wet weather. For all types of winter hazards, remember two key tips: reduce your speed and increase your following distance. The more time you have to react to the hazard the better.

• Do not use cruise control in wet or slippery conditions.

• Give yourself more time to get where you are going.

• Speed limits are set for ideal conditions.

Before you head off to your next destination, it helps to check traffic, road and weather conditions along the way.

Check out the Drive BC Website at drivebc.ca before you travel.

Also check out “Driving in Poor Conditions” at icbc.com for more driving tips.