Winter Driving Safety: What you need to know

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Friday proved a busy day for Tires, Tires, Tires as folks geared up for this weekend’s snowfall.

“People are getting their tires taken care of, because that’s going to be the biggest thing–making sure you can get started and stopped,” Manager Craig McReynolds said.

Most days, McReynolds sees at least 40 customers. Friday, he saw at least 80.

“A lot of other customers are getting their anti-freeze checked, and making sure that their fluids are good for this time of year when it’s a lot harder on your car,” McReynolds said.

Sgt. Ryan Bertrand with the Sioux City Police Department says icy conditions means the time it takes your car to stop will go up–adding defensive driving is the way to go.

“At least 4-6 seconds of following distance is a good rule of thumb to shoot for, and if you’re on the highway, 6-8 seconds is a good mark to shoot for. Give yourself room in front of you and [on] each side in case you have to make an evasive maneuver,” Sgt. Bertrand said.

Before you go, take some blankets with you, and make sure your phone is completely charged.
Sgt. Bertrand also recommends keeping an ice scraper or broom in your car to clear windows and the roof of ice and snow–adding scraping a few areas alone just won’t cut it.

“You want to make sure people can see your license plates, your turn signals, your lights–you’ll need your headlights to be able to drive in the dark, and you want people to be able to see you,” Sgt. Bertrand said.

If you do get into an accident, Sgt. Bertrand says visibility is key. Use a flare kit or cones, lift the hood of your car, and of course, turn on your hazard lights. If necessary, move to a safe location away from the accident.

“Anything you can do to increase visibility is good,” Sgt. Bertrand said.


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