All About Richland

Winter Driving Safety Tips From Richland Public Health

5 Jan , 2018  

Winter snow arrived for Christmas and frigid temperatures will end 2017 and begin 2018. Richland Public Health is reminding all county residents to be prepared for winter driving season.

The leading cause of death during winter storms is motor vehicle crashes. About 6000 traffic deaths and 480,000 traffic injuries occur each year due to winter weather. So how do you keep yourself from becoming one of those statistics?

“The most important thing to remember is to slow down,” says Reed Richmond, Health Educator at Richland Public Health and Senior Driver Safety Program coordinator. “If you have to drive, drive slower.”

Richmond added that allowing more distance to stop is also essential. “People need to remember that even if you have four-wheel or all-wheel drive that doesn’t translate to quicker stopping. In fact, because of their weight, large trucks and SUVs may need longer to stop on ice or snow than a passenger car.”

Richmond added a few quick tips from the AARP Driver Safety workbook:

  • Reduce speed and increase following distance
  • Keep all windows free of snow and ice
  • Make sure your car is ready for winter with proper level of anti-freeze
  • Make sure your tires have adequate tread
  • Bridges and shaded areas ice first and retain ice longer than roadways
  • An icy road is more slippery at 32° than at lower temperatures

Richmond says the two most important safety measures apply to driving at any time of the year: always wear your seat belt and never drive after drinking alcohol.

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