Days Contract Hire issues top tips for winter driving
The guidance comes from Days Contract Hire and is intended to help keep fleet drivers safely on the road during the harshest conditions.
The Top Tips for Winter Driving comprise:
First and foremost, decide if the trip is absolutely essential. If the work can be completed from home, it is safer to stay in than to take a risk on the road unnecessarily. Use traffic reports to avoid the worst hit areas where possible, and consider changing the time of travel to avoid congestion or forecasted changes in the weather.
Drive for the conditions
When faced with flooding, it is essential that the journey is planned carefully, if not avoided altogether. Always assess the conditions to establish how deep the flooding is, and if in doubt, turn around and find an alternative route. If the flooding is not too deep, drive through at a steady, low speed, keeping the revs high until the car is well clear of the water. Be careful not to stall the engine, as changing speed or stopping will greatly increase the risk of getting stuck.
In icy or snowy conditions, drive very smoothly and slow down gently by easing off the throttle and avoid harsh braking. Remember, braking distances on snow and ice will be greatly increased.
Invest in a winter care kit
Make sure to have a winter care kit on hand at all times to ensure that you are prepared for the worst of the weather. Essential equipment to have includes: an ice scraper, de-icer, an interior windscreen cloth, a small snow shovel, a high-vis jacket, a warning triangle, a torch, a warm winter coat, and – if the journey is long distance – food and drink.
Is your vehicle’s service overdue?
Cold weather places a huge strain on many elements of your vehicle, including the engine, electrical system and battery, as well as the gearbox. If your car is overdue a service it’s a good idea to get it booked in as soon as possible to identify any issues early and help to prevent any breakdowns.
‘With vehicles being key for so many people’s livelihoods it is vital that motorists are prepared for every adverse weather condition over the next few months,’ said Aled Williams, director of Days Contract Hire.