Veteran driving instructor Daryle Greenizan says patience is the number one rule for winter driving.
“Unfortunately, lots of people have that [attitude of] ‘No, no I drive a four-wheel drive truck or all-wheel drive vehicle it won’t happen to me, I can keep up the bad habits’,” said Greenizan.
Greenizan says that overconfidence can be a recipe for disaster.
“People [are] not leaving enough space in between cars and going too fast,” said Greenizan.
By leaving more space in between cars, it can prevent accidents, if the car ahead stops suddenly, drivers have more time to prevent rear-ending the car in front of them. But also that if you are hit, your car won’t slide into the car in front of you.
In his 22 years of teaching at the All Weather Driving School in Kelowna, the professional driver has learned what it takes to maneuver through the ice and snow.
“Most people need to leave earlier so that you can compensate for the slower speeds, make sure your car is completely cleaned off before you drive including the roof so the snow doesn’t come back onto the person that is driving behind you and blind them,” said Greenizan.
But, as we all know accidents happen and if you get stuck in the snow you just need to reverse.
“[When] the tires are spinning and we’re not going anywhere, stop spinning the tires you know you can’t go forward anymore. Put it into reverse and back it up a bit,” said Greenizan.
ICBC reports that vehicle crashes peak in December due to holiday stress, weather and driving under the influence.
“Over the Christmas holidays and New Year’s, three people are killed and 510 people are injured in 1,790 crashes in B.C. every year, with poor road conditions being the number one contributing factor,” states a press release.
In the Southern Interior ICBC states that during the Christmas holidays on average that one person is killed and 37 people are injured in 170 crashes.
ICBC recommends preparing your vehicle by having winter tires, an emergency kit, a blanket, food and water on board, slowing down, avoiding distractions, taking plenty of driving breaks and planning for a safe ride home if consuming alcohol.
For more information about winter preparedness visit www.icbc.com