Gearing Up for Safe Driving on Michigan’s Wintery Roads
As the snowy season approaches, drivers should gear up for winter conditions and cold weather driving. Hazardous road situations can arise during winter weather, especially on the icy roads of Michigan. While numerous tips exist for navigating these wintry conditions, one particularly beneficial piece of advice is making sure you have enough tire tread.
Checking your tire tread before the snow.
A simple method to check your tires at home involves using a penny. Insert the penny with Lincoln’s head facing down into the tire tread. If you can see the entire head, there’s insufficient tread for safe driving. Michigan.gov recommends a minimum of 1/8″ of tread for safe driving. To promote even tire wear, they also advise rotating them every 5,000 to 8,000 miles.
The cold weather can impact the performance of brakes, tires, fluids, and battery conditions. Checking fluids every six months or between 5,000 to 10,000 miles is important. For an oil change, inspect the dipstick, and if the oil is below the marked lines, it’s time for a change.
More safety tips.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2021, there were 395 fatal crashes and an estimated 22,325 injury crashes that occurred when there were snow/sleet conditions at the time of the crash.
In 2021, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported 395 fatal crashes and an estimated 22,325 injury crashes during snow or sleet conditions. NHTSA recommends reducing speed when driving in snow, as it is more challenging to control or stop a vehicle on slippery surfaces. Increase your following distance on the road to ensure plenty of stopping time for vehicles ahead. Additionally, avoid crowding snow plows or traveling alongside them.
Find more winter safety tips here and prepare for Michigan’s wintery roads here.