Bates70's Blog

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Vehicle is best in snow

Posted by bates70 on November 20, 2010

It is claimed that a four-wheel drive vehicle is best in snow, but I don’t agree. I have on more than one occasion heard owners of SUV’s complaining that they had been driving their vehicle in four-wheel drive and they still crashed in the snow.

What people don’t understand is that driving in four-wheel drive doesn’t mean you should be driving without the obvious caution. Ice and snow will still affect an SUV, it’s just that with four wheel drive, you can get yourself out of a snow drift, or that ditch you’ve just slid into.

You should treat driving in snow with caution, and be aware what is happening on the road. Don’t drive too fast, as you will be unable to control the car if your tyres lose grip. Slow down for any corners, and keep a good distance from the car in front. You might be managing driving in the snow well, but is the person in front coping.

The last heavy snow we had in Scotland, I was driving a front wheel drive estate car. I drove the twelve miles to work one Sunday, and had no control problems at all, because I drove to the road conditions. My problems started once I reached town, when I had the extra hazard of the other drivers. Most of whom either drove too cautiously, or with dangerous over-confidence because their cars were four-wheel drive.

For a driver to manage to safely drive their car through snow, you must make a few preparations. Make sure your tyres are not worn, as a worn tread reduces a tyre’s grip with the road quite dramatically. Take a blanket, and a spade with you; even the best all-terrain vehicle can get stuck. Most importantly of all, take your time, and don’t try to push the speed up when it’s obvious the conditions are not good enough. I know it’s a corny line, but it’s best to take your time and arrive safely, than not at all.

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