Minimizing Your Risks for Long Trips in Cold Weather

Long distance winter trips can be dangerous and deadly if you do not take proper precautions. Many people stay away from wintry weather altogether because it is safer to do so. However, life does not stop just because winter has arrived. Furthermore, you should know how to minimize your risks and maximize your safety.

Guidelines for Long Distance Winter Trips

The AAA recommends the following tips when driving long distances in ice, snow and cold temperatures:

  • Prepare for the trip. Have an auto repair facility check your vehicle before making the trip. Also bring blankets and heavy clothing. In the event of an unexpected breakdown or getting stuck in the snow, you can stay warm.
  • Stay informed about the weather. Check weather forecasts so you know what to expect. If bad weather warnings exist, delay travel for that day until there are more favorable conditions.
  • Keep in touch. Let family or friends know about your route and where you are headed. Provide them with an estimated arrival time.

What Should You Do If You Get Stuck in the Snow?

Which is better—leaving your car to hike to a gas station or waiting for help? During a severe winter snow storm, it is typically hard to see and easy to get lost. You are better off staying in your vehicle and waiting to be rescued. You will also stay warmer. In addition, if you try to walk or dig out your car, over-exertion can be a problem.

While staying in the car with the heater on, make sure your exhaust pipe is free of ice, snow or mud. A blocked exhaust pipe with air coming into the car can result in carbon monoxide poisoning. Also, it is best to conserve on gas as much as possible. For that reason, you should run the engine only to take the chill out of the air. You can use floor mats, maps or other articles in the car to cover yourself to stay warm.

In an effort to stay visible you should tie a brightly colored piece of material to your antenna. Also, at night you can keep the dome light on. It uses only a small amount of electricity.

If you or a family member suffers serious injury and you believe someone else was at fault, we can help. Schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys at Sackstein, Sackstein & Lee, LLP. We can discuss the legal prospects of pursuing a case.