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Winter Driving Tips to Avoid Accidents

by Jai Sabharwal

posted in Travel and Leisure

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So, here I was, getting ready for a cousin's marriage. I was already late and had a feeling that my cousin would be mad at me. But, it was important and I had no other choice but to hurry. The day was cold and harsh due to the winters and I was not that good a driver - especially for the cold climate. Winters in India might not be snowy in most regions, but the fog is unbearable at times.
And, my luck was not in my favor that day as I could barely make out the road ahead of me. Well, there was driving without fog lights as I was too careless to bother having them repaired. Suddenly, a truck came rumbling in front of me. I got startled at that moment. Thanks to my reflexes, I made a sudden turn, but my car skidded on the wet road leading to an uncontrollable drift. I stopped by the side cursed the driver a minute, but the next moment I reconsidered my opinion. It was my fault.
What we drivers face on the road is - "expecting the unexpected". In other words, we are responsible for our own actions. Driving along the road thinking of getting to our destination, but not caring if we have been prepared for the journey? Winters might not be the only time to be prepared for journeys, but they sure have a harsher climate that can lead one to the stairs of the afterworld.
Thinking of that day made me realize all the accidents that occur on a daily basis. But, most of them can be avoided only if we are prepared for them. So, let me share a few tips to deal with these outrageous situations.
· Prepare your bags accordingly:
Your journey requires you to be prepared with the luggage as per the needs. For long journeys better pack something useful like a first aid kit, a decent container for water and petrol/diesel.
· Please check out your car as well:
After you have the basic needs for yourself, make sure that your car is ready for the journey as well. Whether long or short, the car needs to be prepared for anything. Think of a careless situation where you start your journey like a boss, not bothering to check even the fuel in your car. And, after covering half of the journey you realize that there is no fuel left to drive the car any further. Your luck will hit you hard when you find yourself stranded in the middle of a road where the traffic might be too light.
You surely would not want that to happen so why not make sure that you have your fuel tank checked. Besides that, make sure to clean your windshield properly. You are going to need it the most. Other aides such as air conditioner, airbags, indicators, tires, fog lights, seat belts, and car battery are also to be checked before the start of the journey.
· Journeys are the safest when the climatic situations are verified beforehand:
This requires you to be ready for the weather that particular day when you are planning your journey. Check on the weather and make sure that the climate is suitable for driving. Moreover, make sure to drive only if you have the confidence to do so. Many might just do it for the first time and are not aware of the precautions needed to stay safe. And, carelessness could lead to a nice and cozy bed at a hospital or even six feet under. I suggest avoiding harsh weather and stay safe at home. But, if it is that important then make sure to double check everything.
· What if a tragic situation comes upon you:
Time to face your worst fear. No matter how cautious you had been, there are situations where things get out of hand while driving. Firstly, do not panic. Stay calm and decelerate slowly and steadily. Wet roads can be problematic to take turns on while one is at high speeds. So, drive slowly. You are not driving in a circuit race that you need to stomp on the pedal. In foggy conditions, drive with the fog lights on. For more precautions, toggle the indicator lights on as well. This will help the driver coming from the opposite direction be prepared for letting you pass by.
So, I hope these tips would help you be prepared for the journey. Make sure to stay on the safe side and take care of yourself.
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