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Last modified: 30 May 2022 4:58pm

A person driving in the rain

Winter is back, with a new set of challenges for driving - we’re encouraging drivers to take a few simple steps to drive safe.
As the weather changes driving challenges can change quickly with fog, ice, snow, rain, shorter daylight hours and sunstrike. The district has many shaded areas, which prevent roads from thawing on cooler days. Staying alert and taking extra care is essential, but winter driving does not have to be dangerous or intimidating. Especially not if you remember the four key tips for winter driving:

Plan Ahead – Stay Alert – Slow Down – Drop Back.

Prepare your vehicle before you start your journey. Make sure your wiper blades, headlights and tyres are in good condition and your windscreen is clear inside and out. Before winter really sets in, ensure any necessary maintenance for your vehicle has been completed so you don’t get stranded.
Prepare for your trip, know your route, check for weather conditions, road closures, road works. Plan for food, water, kids and pet’s needs. Better to have supplies and not need them than get stuck and be hungry.

Make sure you can see clearly through your windows in all directions to enable you to see at risk areas on the road. Scanning further ahead gives you time to assess any risk. Be alert for other road users –preparing for and anticipating other’s actions can help reduce the need to make emergency manoeuvrers in poor weather conditions
Be alert to what’s in front of you. Don’t get caught out by a stop sign that just appears. Stay alert, plan ahead, keep your driving smooth and controlled – this helps reduce the risk of loss of traction.

Slowing down slightly will greatly increase your ability to react and control your vehicle. We all know that time someone flew past and you're only two cars back from them at the next town. It's not worth the risk.

Dropping back gives you more stopping distance, time to react and better line of sight to assess the road conditions. Following too close may cause panic in the driver you are following, creating an unexpected behaviour which you may not have time to avoid.

For more tips on safe driving in different winter conditions visit our winter driving page.