During the winter months we should operate our vehicles using a technique known as ‘defensive driving’. This equips us with the skills to significantly reduce the risk of having a nasty accident.
The aim is to eliminate as many risks as possible using forward planning. When all safety precautions have been applied, a driver can operate under any conditions safe in the knowledge that nothing has been left to chance.
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Defensive driving does not begin when a vehicle is in motion. Preparations are made whilst the mode of transport is stationery; a driver should ensure that the correct tyres are fitted and are appropriate for the particular weather condition they will encounter. Wiper blades should also be checked to ensure that they are fully functioning and in good working order.
During the colder months it is sensible to allow plenty of time to reach a destination. A hurried road trip could involve driving faster to meet a time schedule. An average drive across town is risky enough during normal weather but when speed is increased by just 10 mph, the chance of an accident increases by 50%. Add to this an icy road and you are at high risk of being involved in an accident.
On the motorway, it is far better to remain in the slow lane. By keeping things slow, there is adequate time to react with ease, turn or stop with less chance of skidding on ice and colliding into someone else.Open Claim Calculator
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On icy roads, there is always the possibility that tyres could lose their grip. Therefore, it is important to allow enough space both in front and behind. A car takes 12 times longer to reach a complete standstill on icy roads than on dry ones.
Although defensive driving will not guarantee a driver 100% safety, such precautions are certainly advantageous should an accident occur.
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If visibility is so dense that it is safer to pull over to the side, remember to turn off all car lights. Drivers who wish to continue forging ahead, rely on car lights for guidance A car which is stationery but still displaying headlights is very misleading as drivers may not be able to tell that it has stopped. This could result in a bump from behind.
If you have been involved in a car crash and would like to know the viability of your case, call Accident Advice Helpline on: 0800 689 0500 or ring from your mobile on: 0333 500 0993.