How to Prepare For Edmonton Winter Driving
The winter months are upon us and severe weather conditions mean it is more important than ever to be prepared on the roads. Cold weather is Canada’s biggest natural disaster and whether it’s your first time driving in the winter or you're a seasoned snow conqueror, it is important to be prepared.
Do you have a Edmonton winter driving safety kit in your car? Are the snow tires on? Here are five key steps to make sure you’re safe on the roads this winter.
1. Be Prepared for Edmonton Winter Driving conditions
Preparation is half the work for staying safe in your vehicle. Make sure snow tires have been installed, regular oil checkups have been completed, and that you have enough windshield washer fluid in the car. It’s also a good time to make sure the vehicle’s spare tire and batteries are in satisfactory working condition.
2. Have a Winter Safety Kit
A safety kit in the car may seem like unnecessary additional work but if you’re ever stuck in -20 Celsius degrees, you’ll be glad you had one. It is recommended that a winter safety kit include a blanket, booster cables, extra clothing, warning light and reflectors, kitty litter or sand for traction, a shovel, and gas line antifreeze. For the full list of recommended items click here.
3. Always Clean Your Vehicle
Always clean all mirrors, external lights, and areas of limited vision before driving in the winter. The few extra minutes will save much hassle on the road. Remember to clean the snow on top of your car as well as it is common for snow to fall onto the windshield while the car is in motion. Many Impark and Advanced Parking lots are equipped with windshield washing stations if you’re looking for assistance to clean your vehicle before exiting the parking lot.
4. Fill Up
Transportation Alberta recommends to keep a vehicle’s gas tank at least half full at all times during the winter. Adverse driving conditions can cause delays and a short jaunt to a gas station may take much longer during the winter.
5. Drive Safely
Practice good driving habits during the winter months. Always leave extra travel time between destinations. Maintain enough distance from the car in front of you, be patient, and drive defensively. The City of Edmonton recommends leaving at least four seconds worth of distance between your vehicle and the vehicle ahead of you. Keep 10 meters of distance, about three car lengths, between your vehicle and snow cleaning vehicles on the road.
If weather conditions are severe it is also advisable to remain off the roads unless a trip is necessary. Use the tips above to make driving in severe weather conditions safer.
Experienced AMA Driving Instructor Remarks
Even the most experienced drivers can be taken off guard at times. Winter is a force to be reckoned with, but you can apply safe winter driving habits by following these expert tips.