AAA Issues a Winter Weather Driving Alert
Garrett Townsend, GA Public Affairs Director, AAA - The Auto Club Group,
AAA Issues a Winter Weather Driving Alert
Remember BTW before hitting the road
ATLANTA, Ga. (January 28, 2019) – Sub-Freezing temperatures and the likelihood of precipitation may make for challenging driving conditions across Metro Atlanta beginning tomorrow. AAA – The Auto Club Group urges motorists to prepare their vehicles for an emergency and be cautious when driving in adverse weather conditions. According to data from the Federal Highway Administration, each year, nearly one in four (24%) of weather-related vehicle crashes occur on snowy, slushy or icy pavement.
If you have to travel during adverse weather, AAA reminds motorists that driving in wet or slippery conditions is different than driving on dry pavement. “The safest, and most comfortable place, during adverse weather conditions is indoors, but, that is not always possible" said Garrett Townsend, Georgia Public Affairs Director, AAA – The Auto Club Group. "Now is the time for motorists to prepare their vehicles and review some winter driving safety tips.”
Before You Go
Before you hit the road, check local traffic and weather conditions in your area. Georgia motorists can dial 511 on their cell phones for current traffic and road conditions. AAA members can now track weather events for free by signing up for WeatherFX Alerts. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. A properly maintained vehicle and a bit of preparation can help prevent roadside emergencies.
It’s as simple as remembering BTW – Battery, Tires, Windshield:
At 32 degrees (freezing) the battery is 35% weaker than in higher temperatures.
If your battery is older than 3-5 years, have your car’s battery and charging system tested to ensure they are fully charged and in good condition.
Your tires are the only part of the car that has direct contact with the road, so it is important they are in good shape.
To test tread depth, insert a quarter into a tread groove with the top of Washington’s head facing down. If the top of his head is not visible, your tires have at least 4/32” of tread and are fine for continued use. If you can see above the top of Washington’s head, it is time to start shopping for new tires. Take measurements in three locations across the tire’s tread: (1) outer edge, (2) center, and (3) inside edge.
With many motorists parking outside and waking up to frost on the vehicle, the defroster, wipers and wiper fluid need to be in good working condition.
Completely clear your vehicle of snow and ice prior to driving, including all lights and windows for visibility.
Check the fluid levels of your vehicle, particularly washer fluid and anti-freeze, to ensure they are at adequate levels.
On The Road
AAA offers some tips for driving on wet and snow-covered roads.
Slow down and adjust your speed to the road conditions. Leave yourself ample room to stop. Accelerate, turn and brake as gradually and smoothly as you can.
Use extreme caution on bridges and overpasses. Black ice typically forms first in shaded areas of the roadway and on bridges and overpasses that freeze first and melt last. Although the road leading up to a bridge may be fine, the bridge itself could be a sheet of ice.
Buckle up. Ensuring that everyone in your vehicle is properly restrained is the single most effective thing motorists can do to keep themselves and their loved ones safe on the roads.
React quickly. Watch the traffic ahead and slow down immediately at the sight of brake lights, skidding cars or emergency flashers.
Don’t Tailgate. Normal following distances of three to four seconds on dry pavement should be extended to a minimum of eight to ten seconds when driving on slippery surfaces. This increased margin of safety will provide the longer distance needed if you have to stop.
Don’t use cruise control on slippery roads. If your vehicle hydroplanes or skids, you will lose the ability to regain some traction simply by lifting off the accelerator. It will be harder to recover from the loss of traction if cruise control is active.
Don’t slam on the brakes. If your car begins to skid, continue to look and steer in the direction you want the car to go. Slamming on the brakes will only make your vehicle harder to control.
Don’t let your gas tank get below a quarter of a tank. This will provide you with a gas reserve should you become stranded in inclement weather.
About The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9.6 million members across eleven states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 59 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. Visit AAA on the Internet at AAA.com.