Tips on driving safely during winter storms

Published 3:52 pm Wednesday, January 29, 2014

From American Red Cross


As residents begin returning to regular activities following the winter storm, the American Red Cross urges everyone to stay safe during the remaining cold weather and be cautious if traveling on icy roads.

When considering driving on icy or snow-covered roads, motorists are encouraged to weigh the urgency of trips. In the event trips cannot be postponed, it is critical to perform pre-trip vehicle and personal checks, and abide by safety guidelines during your trip.

Safe driving tips:

• Before you leave, let someone know your destination, your route, and when you expect to arrive. If your car gets stuck along the way, help can be sent along your predetermined route.

• Fill the vehicle’s gas tank and clean the lights and windows to help you see. Don’t let the gas tank get too low during the trip.

• Make sure driver and passengers have fastened their seatbelts before departure.

• Don’t use cruise control when traveling in winter conditions.

• Slow down. Speed limits are posted for optimum driving conditions, but during winter weather conditions, speeds should be reduced.

• Extend following distances; do not expect four-wheel drive to help you stop any faster.

• Give snowplows plenty of room and never pass on the right.

• Maintain your lane while driving except to pass and drive as smoothly as possible.

• Maintain awareness of where you are.

• Avoid cell phone use while driving and remember that texting while driving is against the law.

• Be prepared that certain parts of roadways may be icier than others (including on- and off-ramps, bridges, overpasses, curves, etc.).

• Remember that commercial trucks are difficult to operate during winter conditions, and allow plenty of following distance. Larger vehicles have difficulty seeing smaller vehicles.

For more information on how to stay safe this winter, visit the or call 1-800-RED-CROSS to be connected to your local chapter.