Tips for driving in snowy weather
Whether you enjoy the winter or wait anxiously for it to be over, we can all agree on one thing, driving during inclement weather is stressful. Even teen drivers agree with their parents on this one! According to a recent study by Liberty Mutual Insurance and SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions), 82% of licensed teen drivers agree that driving in bad weather is stressful.
How can parents help alleviate this stress? Dr. William Horrey, Ph.D., principal research scientist at the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, has tips to help parents prep their teens in advance and know what to do when faced with snow or ice on the roads.
- Take it slow. Teens are often overconfident in their driving abilities, which can cause them to drive too fast and too close to other drivers. Remind teens of the importance of taking it slow and keeping distance from other drivers in bad weather, especially when driving on winding roads, when approaching stops or during heavy traffic.
- Avoid Distractions. According to Liberty Mutual and SADD, 73 percent of teens admit to having their phones nearby while driving alone. Driving in bad weather can be challenging even without added unnecessary distractions. Remind teens to keep their phones out of reach and on silent so they’re less tempted to check incoming notifications.
- Know when to stay home. No matter how long they’ve had their license, sometimes conditions are simply too bad for teens to be hitting the road. Remind them of this and that sometimes the risks are too high, even for experienced drivers like yourself.
- Always be prepared! During winter months, when there can be bad weather and low temperatures, it’s important to always be prepared in case of unexpected car issues. Remind teens they should keep a snow brush/ice scraper in the car, along with an emergency kit. During the winter, trade tires for winter tires that provide better traction on the road when temperatures drops below 45 degrees. Liberty Mutual’s Masterthis winter driving kit provides helpful reminders.