As winter takes hold around Golden, Colorado, the roads will become significantly more dangerous. As temperatures drop and precipitation freezes, the risk of severe crashes and major traffic delays will increase. Blinding snowstorms, slippery roads and difficulty controlling a vehicle during inclement weather can all contribute to major crashes.
No one can eliminate their risk on the winter roads unless they avoid traveling entirely. However, there are certain steps you can take that will reduce your likelihood of experiencing a major motor vehicle collision related to winter weather conditions.
Reviewing the driving tips below every year in the autumn could help you stay safer during the winter months.
Get your vehicle ready
If you drive frequently, you may find it worthwhile to invest in snow tires for your vehicle. Even if you do not swap out your tires when the temperature starts to drop, you’ll need to pay closer attention to the air pressure in your tires, as colder weather can reduce air pressure and can therefore affect your traction on the road.
Beyond that, you need to replace your windshield wipers, keep antifreeze and windshield wiper fluids filled and otherwise ensure that you have your vehicle in prime condition to handle slick roads and heavy precipitation.
Reduce your speed and give other drivers more space
Any amount of precipitation on the road increases your risk of a crash, and lower temperatures don’t help. Driving at a slower speed will protect you, as will increasing your following distance to give other vehicles more space.
Adjust your daily schedule for safer travels
Even if you watch the news before bed every night, there’s no guarantee that you will always know about snow before it falls. You could wake up to roads covered in ice with no warning from the local meteorologist.
You have to assume that you might encounter winter weather upon waking on any given day. Waking up 10 minutes earlier than you do during the warmer seasons can give you the time you need to drive a little more slowly to your destination and therefore stay safer on the road.
Properly modifying your driving behaviors to account for the unique traffic safety risks caused by frigid winter weather can help reduce your personal risk of causing a motor vehicle collision.