by Kate Ferrin, Client Relations Associate
Looks like it is going to be a long winter! The snow is already coming down heavily across most of the country and it's an important time to prepare yourself for driving on snow and ice. Follow these tips to keep yourself safe when the roads are bad:
1. Winterize your car if you are in an area with bad driving conditions in the winter.
2. Slow down! Driving too fast is the easiest way to lose control of your car in winter weather. In normal conditions, you should have a clearance of three seconds between you and another car. In the winter you should increase that distance to a full eight to ten seconds. Yes, that does mean you have to give yourself extra time to get around, but you and your host family will be a lot safer for it.
3. Increase visibility! Always clear all snow off your car so that others can see you – that includes the roof! Keep a large push broom in the trunk of your car to easily remove large amounts of snow. Turn on both front and rear defrosters to soften the ice before scraping the windows completely clear. Also, check your tailpipe to make sure it's snow-free!
4. Know how to skid! If you lose control of your vehicle and start to skid, always remain calm and follow these steps:
- Do not panic and do not brake!
- Take your foot off the gas.
- Turn into the skid – meaning turn the wheel in the direction the car is now moving – not always where you want the car to go.
- Wait for the car to slow down to regain control.
The key to a safe winter for au pairs and host families is driving slowly and carefully; take your time and never lose control.
Make the New Year safe and happy for everyone on the road!
A fan of independent cinema and proponent of the Oxford comma, Matthew began his career at a Miami-based tech startup before returning to West Virginia University to pursue his M.A. in Foreign Languages. He has worked at InterExchange since 2006 and currently serves as a Marketing Project Manager.