WINTER DRIVING TIPS
The Lake Placid Police Department urges all motorists to drive with caution during these winter months. If possible, do not travel during times of inclement weather. Staying off the roads during periods of snow is the safest option for all motorists and it allows snow removal crews to clear the roadways.
To view current traffic conditions in NY visit http://www.511ny.org/mapview.aspx?showWTA=true
Advice from the NY State Dept of Motor Vehicle Driver's Manual
Winter is the most difficult driving season. Not only do you have snow and ice to deal with, but there are fewer hours of daylight as well.
Before winter weather arrives, make sure your vehicle is in good condition, especially the tires. Make sure you've got good snow tires, and put them on early. Try not to get caught without them in the first snowfall. Never combine radial and non-radial tires on the same vehicle. On front-wheel drive cars, it's best to put snow tires or "all-season" tires on all four wheels, not just the front.
If you must drive, clear the ice and snow from your vehicle, all windows and windshield wipers. Be sure the windshield washer reservoir is adequately filled with a freeze-resistant cleaning solution.
Drive slowly. Even if your vehicle has good traction in ice and snow, other drivers will be traveling cautiously. Don't disrupt the flow of traffic by driving faster than everyone else.
In a rear-wheel drive vehicle, you can usually feel a loss of traction or the beginning of a skid. There may be no such warning in a front-wheel drive, however. Front-wheel drives do handle better in ice and snow, but they do not have flawless traction, and skids can occur unexpectedly. Don't let the better feel and handling of a front-wheel drive car cause you to drive faster than you should.
Despite a popular misconception, the best approach to recovering from a skid is the same for both front and rear-wheel drive vehicles. If your rear wheels start to skid:
- Turn the steering wheel in the direction you want the front wheels to go. If your rear wheels are sliding left, steer left. If they're sliding right, steer right.
- If your rear wheels start sliding the other way as you recover, ease the steering wheel toward that side. You might have to steer left and right a few times to get your vehicle completely under control.
- If your car has an anti-lock braking system (ABS), keep your
foot on the pedal. If not, pump the pedal gently, pumping more
rapidly as your car slows down. Braking hard with non-anti-lock
brakes will make the skid worse.
- Take your foot off the gas and shift to neutral, but don't try to steer immediately.
- As the wheels skid sideways, they will slow the vehicle and traction will return. As it does, steer in the direction you want to go. Then put the transmission in "drive" or release the clutch, and accelerate gently.
When sleet, freezing rain or snow start to fall, remember that bridges, ramps, and overpasses are likely to freeze first. Also be aware that slippery spots may still remain after road crews have cleared the highways.
The information above was reprinted from pages
76-78 of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles Driver's