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Tips for Teens Coping with Dangerous Winter Roads

Slick, snowy roads can fool even the more experienced driver.

by on Dec.29, 2009

Slow down! Antilock brakes and all-wheel drive won't help you stop faster.

Now that winter is firmly entrenched in our northern latitudes, drivers are trying to cope with the ice, snow, and other hazards that turn roads treacherous and contribute to the more than 1.5 million annual weather-related car crashes, according to the National Research Council.

Teen drivers, many of whom facing wintry conditions behind the wheel for the first time, need guidance to safely navigate the roadways through the upcoming months. To help, Liberty Mutual Insurance has a host of winter safety resources for teens click here.  And if TDB’s experience is representative, more than teens need to think about navigating a two-ton car through the slop.

“Driving in wintry conditions is no easy task, even for seasoned drivers, and it is especially difficult for younger drivers with limited experience to adapt to slippery roads and poor visibility,” said Dave Melton, a driving safety expert with the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety.

“Teen drivers need to take extra steps to protect themselves this winter, and parents need to promote and enforce safe driving habits to keep their teens safe.”

Driving Tips!

Before getting behind the wheel, a driving safety video at the site will help teens and parents get winter road-ready and ensure their cars are safe and in good working order.

Website visitors also will find car maintenance tips and a checklist for a winter driving safety kit. These tips include:

  • Before you get on the road in bad weather, check your local news stations and their websites for detailed, up-to-the-minute weather and traffic information.
  • If your trip is absolutely necessary, give yourself extra time.
  • During inclement weather put extra distance – at least five or six seconds -between yourself and the vehicle in front.
  • Antilock brakes, all-wheel and four-wheel drive won’t help you stop faster.
  • Turn on your headlights so other drivers can see you. In snow, fog and rain, don’t use high beams – they increase glare for both you and other drivers.
  • Signal your intentions early; don’t surprise other drivers.
  • Do not use cruise control when roads are hazardous.
  • And, slow down!
  • Did we mention slow down!