Take it Easy
Winter will probably be with us by the time you read this. With it comes bad driving conditions. We’ll be dealing with snow ice and reduced visibility for the next four months or so.
The biggest mistake I see people make in winter is not adjusting speed enough for conditions. We’ve all heard the saying “Speed Kills.” It should more properly be, “Speed too fast for the conditions and environment kills.”
If you are on Highway 395 on the prairie between here and Spokane on a clear dry morning with no traffic 80 M.P.H. is fairly safe. Illegal, but fairly safe.
On the same stretch of road, in the winter, with black ice and commuter traffic, 40 M.P.H. may be dangerously fast.
I think, perhaps, the problem may be that we are creatures of habit. We have driven our work commute for instance at 60 M.P. H. all summer and it’s become habit to drive at that speed and allow that amount of time for the trip. Driving on a straight highway is a fairly boring task. I think sometimes people’s minds wonder and they revert to their summertime habits and speeds.
If you do this and you’re driving 50 or 60 M.P. H. on a slick highway, all it takes is the slightest disturbance, a twitch of the wheel, a touch of the brakes, or even a gust of wind from a passing car and your car will lose that little grip it has on the highway. Once that happens, on icy surfaces, there’s almost nothing you can do to control your car.
So please, when conditions are bad, pay attention, slow down, and allow extra time for your trip. At least that way you will get there.