Avoiding travel problems during winter travel

Pre-Journey Checks
To avoid difficulties when travelling during the winter months, drivers should make the following pre-journey checks

  • petrol (or diesel) – don’t run out of fuel
  • oil – check levels once a month
  • water – check radiator and screenwash once a month
  • damage – check wipers, lights etc for signs of wear and tear or damage
  • electrics – check lights, indicators and controls are working properly
  • rubber – are your tyres well inflated, legal, with good tread and free from damage?
  • yourself – are you fit to drive? Have you slept well? Are you taking any medication(s) that could make it unsafe for you to drive?

Carry an emergency kit

Drivers should keep the following items in their vehicles from the start of winter:

  • an ice scraper and de-icer
  • a torch and spare batteries – or a wind-up torch
  • warm clothes and blankets – for you and all passengers
  • boots
  • first aid kit
  • jump leads
  • a shovel
  • road atlas
  • sunglasses (the low winter sun and glare off snow can be dazzling)

Check the weather forecast and traffic reports
Drivers should check the latest traffic and weather.

  • In severe and wintry weather it’s even more important to plan your journey. Check the latest traffic situation before you set off
  • When you’re on the road, pay attention to the changing road, traffic and weather conditions. Be ready to slow down and take more care if you need to, particularly on bends and exposed roads. Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security – even if you drive every day on the same stretch of road.
  • Keep listening to the radio for traffic and weather updates.
  • On long journeys, consider taking a break at regular intervals – and that’s an ideal time to check the traffic conditions on the road ahead.

For advice on any area of road transport law, contact Jared Dunbar on 01829 773 105.
Content is believed to be correct at time of writing.  Content written on 29 October 2013.

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