Winter driving takes preparation and skill.

Unprepared and cocky about it. Sound familiar?

At least a good chunk of us admit to being the worst winter drivers.

  • Nov. 22, 2016 5:00 a.m.

Despite the majority admitting to being the worst winter drivers in the nation in a new BCAA survey conducted by Insights West, B.C. drivers are taking little action to prepare for bad weather. BCAA provides drivers with safety tips to prepare their vehicle and adjust driving habits for winter.

Almost one in three (32 per cent) B.C. motorists say there’s no need for them to prepare for winter driving because they consider themselves to be a good driver. One third (31 per cent) say they won’t prepare until it actually snows, while one third (31 per cent) don’t believe B.C. is in store for a bad winter.

“Call it overconfidence or denial but, based on our data and in my experience, too many British Columbians, especially in the Lower Mainland, don’t think about winter driving until it’s too late,” says Stu Miller, BCAA senior manager of automotive operations.

Miller, who has worked in the business for 20 years, says he sees it every season. “Winter weather can create unpredictable road conditions anywhere and at any time, which can turn out to be challenging for even the most experienced driver.”

BCAA offers some easy tips to help drivers stay safe on the roads this winter:

1. Prepare your car so it endures weather conditions and performs well so you can drive safely.

• Get a complete vehicle check-up before cold weather sets in.

• Carry a winter driving emergency kit and chains in your car.

2. Adjust your driving behaviours to match the weather conditions.

Take precautions before and while you drive—clear snow and ice from windows and lights, defog all windows before you head out, drive at slower speeds, leave more room between you and the car ahead and use turn signals well in advance.

• Check road and weather conditions before you head out.

3. Make safety your priority

Don’t underestimate the impact all winter conditions can have on your car and ability to drive safely.

• Be honest about your driving skills and comfort levels—don’t drive in conditions when you don’t have the skills or if you’re too nervous.

• Avoid the temptation to drive when you shouldn’t by having other transportation options already planned.

For more information and tips on how to prepare for winter driving, visit bcaa.com/winterdriving.

 

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