Learning how to drive safely when there is snow and ice on the ground is part of the responsibility associated with living in New England. The statistics for winter driving aren’t good, which is why it should be avoided whenever possible. But life goes on, and you need to get to and from work, get the kids to school, take them to karate class, go grocery shopping, and live your life. You can’t be expected to become a shut-in for months at a time while waiting for the snow and ice to melt. Having a great Fall River car insurance policy can help you after an accident, but your best bet is learning how to avoid one in the first place.
However, the US Department of Transportation says that there are more than 116,800 people injured and more than 1,300 killed due to auto accidents that happen on snowy, slushy, and icy roads. That’s a fact that we cannot ignore. Your Fall River auto insurance company wants you to have all of the information you need to protect yourself, your family, and others on the roadway this winter. Take a peek at some of the safety tips available on our website from your Massachusetts auto insurance agency. It’s not about reducing claims on auto insurance in Fall River, but about arming our customers with the information they need to stay safe on our local roads, and anywhere else they travel.
Give Yourself More Time and Space
There will always be that driver on your bumper in traffic no matter what you do. However, you can learn how to give yourself more time and space to recover if you hit an icy patch on the road or room to stop if someone ahead of you experiences difficulties. Slow down, keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you, and stay alert at all times. This is a very basic tip, but it is one that many drivers overlook. You are in control of your vehicle. You might not be able to control the weather, the traffic, or that bumper-rider behind you, but you can give yourself more time and space to prepare for winter dangers.
Keep Your Vehicle Maintained
The winter season takes its toll on even the newest and most ruggedly designed vehicles. Make sure to stay on top of essential vehicle maintenance for your car, truck, or SUV. Make sure your battery is in great shape before the season hits, but take time to clean it and test it throughout the winter months. Failed batteries are the number one cause of stranded motorists in the winter. As the temperature drops, the charge can drop too. Invest in a safe battery charger that can be used from inside the vehicle while you stay warm from the elements. Check your tires, tire pressure, and tread regularly, especially if you have a significant commute. Perform all oil changes, and manufacturer recommended maintenance, particularly your braking system.
Driving at a Safe Speed
Safe driving does not necessarily mean slow driving. There are some situations where an unusually slow driver can be the cause of an accident. High speeds and unusually low speeds are a danger to all other drivers who are sticking with the flow of traffic. Avoid becoming a hazard on the road by operating your vehicle at a normal pace. Know the speed limits and the limits of your vehicle. Take time to learn the amount of space that you need to come to a safe stop at residential, city, and highway speeds. This will help you to avoid becoming involved in an accident during the winter and throughout the year.
Learn Defensive Driving Techniques
While you don’t need to go down to the local speedway and take a course from a professional racecar driver, it wouldn’t hurt to find out about area classes for safe driving techniques. Do you know how to react in the event of a skid or spinout? What will you do if you hit a patch of black ice on the highway? In most cases, it is possible to learn how to steer yourself out of trouble, even in a significant slide. Snowy, icy, and slushy roads can lead to an accident if you don’t know what to do in a given situation. Defensive driving classes can help you learn how to spot an escape route, know how to handle your vehicle, and practice in a safe and controlled environment so you’ll be ready for anything winter can throw at you.
Carry the Essentials
Make sure you have everything necessary to keep your windshield clear of snow and ice. New wiper blades at the beginning of the season, along with seasonal windshield wiper fluid, ice scrapers, a working HVAC system that will defog your windows, and working headlights, fog lights, and high beams can be used to improve your visual ability. Have a shovel and some type of grit or gravel in your trunk to help you dig out if you get stuck in the snow and ice. Have an extra jacket, blanket, fresh water, first aid kit, and safety gear stowed in the trunk. Go through your checklist before the first snow hits and check on your supplies throughout the season to make sure you have everything you might need.
Get Quality Auto Insurance in Fall River
Protect your vehicle and your future by getting a Fall River car insurance policy that will protect you when you need it most. Don’t just meet the minimum requirements for Massachusetts auto insurance, work with our experienced Fall River auto insurance agents to find the coverage and premium rates that are right for you. Call Paul Sullivan Insurance Agency at 508-678-9611. We offer a wide range of coverage options for auto insurance in Fall River and the surrounding Southcoast region.