The winter holiday season brings great things like Christmas, New Year’s celebrations, delicious food, and time with family.  It also can bring not-so-great things like adding pounds to the waistline, juggling a hectic schedule, and feeling more tired when you return to work after the first of the year then you were when the holiday season began!

In a child’s eyes, and for some adults, the winter holiday season means snow – which is a great thing.  Building snowmen and igloos, riding a sled down a hill, having a snowball fight, and on those great days – no school!  From a driver’s perspective, it’s sloppy and irritating, creates delays, and sparks the “wish I lived in Florida” feeling.

Regardless of whether or not you enjoy the snow, each one of us living in snow-prone areas must properly prepare ourselves for winter driving. Here are five winter driving tips to assure we reach our destination safely.

1.  Dress appropriately.  This would include a warm coat, gloves, good shoes or boots, hat, and scarf.

2.  Prepare your car for winter.  Assure tires are properly inflated, fluid levels are maintained, the gas tank is at least 3/4 full when a storm is approaching, and windshield wiper blades are working well.

3.  Stock your vehicle. In the event you do get stranded, be sure to have plenty of blankets, some snacks, a good working flashlight, and extra clothes.

4.   Have something with grit.  If you get stuck, it’s always good to have a bag of salt, sand, ice melt, or even kitty litter to provide some traction.

5.  Don’t be in a hurry. Judge the road conditions and drive accordingly.  Try to stay on roads that have been plowed, salted or treated.  Drive defensively when in heavy traffic.   And remember, black ice can always be a possibility.

What other ways do you prepare for winter driving?  I welcome your tips and suggestions.

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