As the winter season descends upon Missouri, the picturesque landscapes transform into a winter wonderland. However, the beauty comes with its own set of challenges, especially on the roads. At Sticklen & Sticklen Personal Injury Law Firm, we prioritize the safety and well-being of our community. In this blog, we share essential tips to help you stay safe on the roads during the winter months in Missouri.
Winter weather in Missouri can be unpredictable. Before heading out, ensure your vehicle is winter-ready. This includes checking your tires for proper inflation and tread, testing your brakes, and making sure all fluids are at the recommended levels. Consider carrying a winter survival kit in your car, including items like a blanket, flashlight, extra batteries, non-perishable snacks, and a first aid kit.
Slow Down & Increase Following Distance
Icy and snowy roads require a more cautious approach. Reduce your speed and increase your following distance to allow for more time to react to unexpected situations. Sudden stops on slippery roads can lead to accidents, so give yourself ample space between vehicles.
Clear Your Windows & Lights
Before driving, take the time to clear all snow and ice from your windows, mirrors, and lights. Visibility is crucial during winter conditions, and unobstructed windows ensure you can see and be seen by other drivers.
Brake & Accelerate Gently
Abrupt movements can lead to loss of control on icy roads. Practice gentle acceleration and braking to avoid skidding. If your vehicle has anti-lock brakes (ABS), apply steady pressure to the brake pedal during a stop.
Stay Informed About Weather Conditions
Keep an eye on weather forecasts and road conditions before embarking on a journey. If conditions are severe, consider delaying your trip or finding alternative routes. The Missouri Department of Transportation provides real-time updates on road conditions, making it easier to plan your travels accordingly.
Beware of Black Ice
Black ice, often nearly invisible on the road, is a significant hazard during winter. Be especially cautious on bridges, overpasses, and shaded areas, as they tend to freeze first. If you encounter black ice, avoid sudden movements and let off the accelerator gently.
Use Winter Tires
Consider investing in winter tires, which are designed to provide better traction on snow and ice. The improved grip can make a significant difference in maintaining control of your vehicle in challenging conditions.
Plan for Emergencies
Despite all precautions, emergencies can still occur. Make sure your phone is charged before leaving, and have emergency contact numbers saved. If you find yourself in a precarious situation, stay inside your vehicle, call for assistance, and wait for help to arrive.
Winter driving in Missouri demands extra attention and preparedness. By following these tips, you can enhance your safety on the roads and reduce the risk of accidents. At Sticklen & Sticklen Personal Injury Law Firm, we prioritize the well-being of our community, and we encourage everyone to take proactive steps to ensure a safe and enjoyable winter season. Contact us today for representation. Stay safe, Missouri!