Northeast Ohio has experienced a rather mild winter so far, but with inclement weather headed this way, AAA wants to make sure drivers are prepared for this year’s snowy road conditions.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for much of Northeast Ohio from 9 p.m. Friday until 3 p.m. Saturday, warning of:
- Mixed precipitation
- 1 to 3 inches of total snow accumulation
- Ice accumulations of a light glaze
- Winds gusting as high as 40 mph
Before you hit the road, this weekend or at any point this winter during winter weather conditions, make sure you check out the following tips from AAA:
- Stay home if you can. Your best bet for staying safe when the weather is poor is not going out unless you have to.
- Do not tailgate. Normal following distances of three to four seconds on dry pavement should be extended to a minimum of five to six seconds when driving on slippery surfaces. The extra time will provide additional braking room should a sudden stop become necessary.
- Never use cruise control on slippery roads. If your vehicle hydroplanes or skids, you will lose the ability to regain some traction simply by lifting off the accelerator. It will be harder to recover from the loss of traction if cruise control is active.
- Slow down and adjust your speed to the road conditions. Leave yourself ample room to stop. Accelerate, turn and brake as gradually and smoothly as you can.
- Don’t slam on the brakes. If your car begins to skid, continue to steer in the direction you want the car to go. Slamming on the brakes will only make your vehicle harder to control.
- Use extreme caution on bridges and overpasses. Black ice typically forms first in shaded areas of the roadway and on bridges and overpasses that freeze first and melt last. Although the road leading up to a bridge may be fine, the bridge itself could be a sheet of ice.
AAA also suggested that before winter weather hits, drivers get their battery tested to ensure it’s strong enough to endure cold weather, replace worn-out windshield wipers, make sure tires have adequate tread and assemble an emergency kit for winter weather, including sand or kitty litter, a small shovel, and blankets.