winter driving

AAA Offers Winter Weather Tips for Drivers

Ahead of the winter weather slated to occur through the next few days, AAA is encouraging drivers to be ready just in case they're caught in an emergency situation.

Even though the snow totals may be lower than usual, AAA said drivers should still take precautions before and while driving on the roads.

"Sometimes less accumulation can actually result in more problems and more risks to drivers," said Amy Parmenter, a spokesperson with AAA in Greater Hartford. "In some cases, drivers don't adjust their driving behaviors for the conditions."

Parmenter also mentions the agency has received a large number of calls this week due to dead batteries.

"One of the factors contributing to the dead batteries is people are staying home and working from home as opposed to using their cars every day," said Parmenter.

Bad weather and sloppy road conditions are attributed to more than 2,000 road deaths every winter and more than a half a million crashes, according to research by the AAA Foundation of Traffic Safety.

"We know that speeding has been a big problem throughout the pandemic and we just really want to encourage folks to slow down and take this weather event seriously," said Parmenter. "We want the public to understand that when the roads are covered whether it's an inch or 6 inches, you don't have that same type of traction."

AAA offers the following Winter Weather Driving Tips:

  • Slow Down - If there's a change in conditions, it's imperative all motorist change their driving habits.
  • Never use cruise control - drivers need to be able to react when cases are wet and slippery.
  • Turn on Headlights - It's important to be able to see the roads and for other drivers to see your headlghts.
  • Limit Distractions - Always! It's especially important whenever you're driving in winter weather conditions.

AAA Automobile Tips:

  • Check Tires
  • Check Tire Pressure - It's important to double check you're tire pressure whenever you're leaving for your destination. Winter weather usually requires higher tire pressure.
  • Check Tire Thread - You can test the depth of the thread with a quarter. If all of Washington's head can be seen, time for new tires.
  • Check Battery - This is important if you have not started your vehicle in a long time. Starting your enginge in cold temperatures can take up to twice as much current as needed under normal conditions. The average battery lasts 3-5 years in New England.
  • Have a battery and charring system tested by a trained technician.

AAA also recommends having a emergency kit inside your car.

"This year it's important to have extra masks due to the COVID19 pandemic," says Parmenter. "It's imperative to have the emergency kit because a lot of times drivers never believe their car could break down when out on the roads."

Recommend Items - Winter Emergency Kit:

  • car charger and/or external battery for your phone
  • face masks
  • bag of sand, cat litter, rock salt, or traction mats
  • wiper fluid, windshield de-icer
  • flashlight with extra batteries
  • first-aid kit
  • windshield scraper and brush
  • emergency flares or reflectors
  • battery booster cables
  • small shovel
  • blankets, extra gloves, hats, scarves, and socks
  • hand/foot warmers
  • Drinking water and non-perishable snacks (protein bars, granola bars, pretzels, crackers
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