On my very interesting drive into work this morning, I have to question where their head is located. I live in a wonderful country. We experience two seasons, Winter and Construction. There might be some Autumn in the mix, but sometimes it passes by too quickly. Now that we are in the winter season, perhaps we should all band together and get on the same page. We all have different driving styles, some are professional, some are NASCAR wannabes, some are Sunday drivers, et cetera, et cetera. We should all be driving safely. There should be no argument with this safety. Not only are you driving for yourself and whoever your passengers may be, you should also take into account you are not the only ones on the road. Here are a few of my winter driving tips:
1. Washer fluid. Make sure you have some. Under the hood of your vehicle, there is a container specially designed to house this fluid. It comes in handy when someone passes you and sprays debris and snow onto your vehicle.
2. Wiper blades. Very good to have. Make sure they remove as much water from your windshield as possible. You do not need the extra challenge.
3. Windows. They have a purpose. They are meant to give you a view to the outside world. Before you leave your parking location, clear them. You should be able to see outside of all of them. Don't just use your debit card to clear off a little spy hole. Go big! Clear off the whole thing.
4. Snow removal. Clear all the snow off of your vehicle. Yes, the roof as well. For those of us vertically challenged, you can open your door, step onto the step and reach further along the roof. I do this after I get most of the snow cleared away. It works well for me. I only suggest this if are strong enough to support yourself.
5. Four wheel drive. Not all that great if you don't know how to operate them. There is that old adage, it's not the machine but the operator. Just because you have four wheel drive, it does not mean you can drive as you do during our Autumn or Spring month. I'm not sure about the Summer month. I'm always waiting for the friendly person to switch the sign so I may proceed slowly with caution. Four wheels will lose traction just as efficiently as rear or front wheel drive. You still must drive for the conditions of the road.
6. Reduce your speed. I cannot say this enough. If the old K car in front of you is doing a mere 30km/hr, there is a reason. I cannot tell you how many vehicles flew by me this morning, and then shortly up ahead were shiny side down. I don't know about you kind folks but I would rather arrive in one piece than in a bag on someone's table.
7. Space. I have a huge personal space bubble on a good day. It gets obscenely more in lousy weather conditions. When you think about braking, only a very small portion of your tire is making contact with the pavement (ice). The last thing you want to do is rely on that minute space when you apply your brakes. The more room you have in front of you, the more chances you have to react if you see someone ahead doing something irresponsible. Makes sense does it not?
8. Braking. This is not the only option you have to slow down your vehicle. You have all those other gears at your disposal. If you apply your brakes and they do not react, slip down a gear so your vehicle will start slow to a speed you can control. Neutral is also a good gear to become acquainted with. Do not hit your brakes hard or quickly when you start to slide. You many end up one of those unfortunate shiny side down people. If you refer to point 5, you probably will not have to worry about this point as much.
There are so many other points that I could go into, but these were the main ones I saw on my way into work today. The only thing i really want to stress is to be careful. You may not realize it, but you mean the world to someone. They will be absolutely miserable if you do something stupid that shortens your time here with us.
I've lectured enough for tonight. I'm going to put my soap box and work on my mittens. There is not much left to do with them. I plan to finish them tonight. If I do, I will be sure to post the pictures.
Have a good night everyone. Stay warm and safe.