Friday June 5, 2015
Winter Driving Tips
you live in a part of the country with even occasional severe winter
weather, you need to know how to drive safely on icy or snowy roads.
This guide is designed to help you prepare for driving in winter
weather, get your car ready to go when it’s time to venture out, have a
safe trip, and survive if things go wrong.
Before the first
snowflake falls or the temperature drops to below freezing, it is time
to think about preparing to drive in winter weather. After all, as
Benjamin Franklin said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to
So what needs to be
done to be really prepared for winter driving? The answer is three-fold:
prepare the car, prepare a survival kit, and prepare yourself.
to read the full release.
Winterizing The Car
What ICBC, the RCMP and the
Provincial Government say about snow tires
yesterday, just as the RCMP were about to put out their Get A Grip release, the
Chilliwack community was hit hard when a 19-year-old woman tragically lost her
life after the car she was driving spun off Hwy. 1 at Annis Rd. Police later
attributed the accident to not having snow tires.
This should never have happened and a young life was
lost simply due to a lack of four snow tires and underscores how important it is
to winterize your car. Driving in inclement weather without snow tires is like
driving a car that's drunk. Why do it? Driving with one headlight or tail light
or can lead to a crash too. It's best to check everything especially good tires.
ICBC says people in the Lower Mainland need to be
prepared for a snowy winter. If your car doesn’t have the proper snow tires and
if you end up blocking traffic, you could get a ticket. And, if you get into an
accident then you’re liable. Are you prepared?
Below are three releases from the BC Government, The
RCMP and ICBC
BC Government: First Blast of Winter
Reminds Us To Check Tires
Nov. 24, 2010
BC Government Release
Winter tire safety
checks are underway this week in the Hope-Fraser Canyon area to ensure vehicles
are properly equipped for winter driving, Transportation and Infrastructure
Minister Shirley Bond announced today.
“Safety is our top priority,” said Bond. “With winter
weather already hitting most of the province, we want to remind motorists to be
prepared by installing good winter-tread tires, properly maintaining their
vehicle and visiting DriveBC before planning a trip.”
The Province’s Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement (CVSE)
branch and the RCMP will be conducting tire checks on major highways and
companion roads in various locations in the Hope-Fraser Canyon area.
Winter tires improve driving safety by providing better
traction, braking and handling during frost, snow, slush and icy conditions.
Motorists are encouraged to use four good winter-tread tires even in areas that
see little snow, as temperatures of seven degrees or lower can affect tire
performance. In addition, check tire air pressure frequently, as it decreases in
“Travelling in winter conditions can be challenging and I
encourage anyone driving to have proper winter tires,” said Chilliwack-Hope MLA
Barry Penner. “Keeping drivers as safe as possible along our roads and highways
is important to myself and our government.”
Drivers of commercial vehicles over
27,000 kg that operate outside the Lower Mainland or Vancouver Island are
required to use winter tires and carry tire chains now through April 30.
About 250 “use winter tires or carry chains beyond this
point” warning signs are prominent in mountainous terrain throughout the
don’t have mandatory winter tire regulations in B.C., we strongly encourage
people to use them. Always remember to follow the three key elements of safe
winter driving: stay alert, slow down and stay in control” added Bond.
For the latest highway conditions
before planning a trip, visit: www.drivebc.ca
RCMP: First Blast of Winter Reminds Us
To Check Tires
Nov. 25, 2010
this time every year, the same question is asked: Do I really need winter tires?
The answer is a resounding yes. Here’s is why: Rubber tends to harden in cold
weather thus reducing friction and stopping capability of the vehicle. The new
generation winter tires maintain their elasticity and gripping power at lower
temperatures (-35 C and bellow), whereas all season tires tend to stiffen and
lose gripping power around 0 C. The improved gripping power at lower
temperatures has its benefits. A study showed that winter tires reduce stopping
distances by up to 25% or between 2 to 3 car lengths. That could be the
difference between a safe stop and a fender bender or worse.
Motor Vehicle Act
Section 208 (1) For the purpose of this section, "winter tire" means a
tire that is:
(a) advertised or represented by its manufacturer or a person in the
business of selling tires to be a tire intended principally for winter use,
and that provides, or is designed to provide, adequate traction in snow or
(b) in the condition respecting tread wear and other particulars the
(2) The minister responsible for the administration of the Transportation
Act may, by public notice or by placing signs, prohibit vehicles from being
driven or operated on a highway that are not equipped with chains, winter
tires or sanding devices, or a combination of these the minister considers
adequate and necessary in view of prevailing road conditions.
(3) For the purposes of a prosecution under this section, the onus is on the
defendant to prove that a tire alleged not to be a winter tire is in fact a
all season tires considered to be winter tires? NO. All season radials are not
by law approved winter tires because they are not intended principally for
winter use. Winter tires will have a symbol of a mountain peak with a snowflake
on the sidewalls. Tires marked with the letters “M+S”, or “mud and snow”,
provide safe all-weather condition, but may not always be suitable for severe
snow conditions. The “M+S” rating is not a reliable indicator of a good winter
tire. Consumers should research their tire options and make an informed decision
that may save lives on an icy road. The law also says a winter tire must have no
less than 3.5 mm of rubber tread on it.
It is important for drivers
and vehicle owners to understand the difference between all season tires and
winter tires. Every year there are countless collisions that could have been
avoided if the vehicles had been equipped with proper tires. No one should have
to experience a preventable collision. Furthermore, the cost of physical
injuries and pain cannot be truly measured in dollars and cents.
If you plan on driving on
snow or ice covered roads, make sure you have the proper tires on your vehicle.
One some of the highways outside of the Greater Vancouver area, you could be
stopped and turned back if the road conditions are such that winter tires are
required to travel safely. Please have the proper tires during this winter.
In addition to winter tires, here are some tips for safe winter driving:
• Get your vehicle
ready for winter in the fall.
• Don’t drive under the influence.
• Pack an emergency kit.
• Learn and practice winter driving techniques before you need them.
• Plan your trip and tell your friends & family. Check road and weather
• Remove all snow from your vehicle before each trip.
• Give yourself extra travel time in bad weather.
• Avoid using overdrive and cruise control on slippery roads.
• Travel with a fully charged cell phone for emergency situations.
• SLOW DOWN and WEAR your seatbelt.
“Dedicated to Improving
public safety on our roadways
Released by: Cpl. Jamie CHUNG
Media Relations Officer "E" Division Traffic Services HQ 306C-20338 65th Avenue,
Langley, BC V2Y 2X3 Office: (604)539-2718
five tips to help customers prepare for challenging winter road conditions
VANCOUVER, Nov. 24 - With below-freezing
temperatures across B.C. set to turn into substantial snowfall by tomorrow, and
then perhaps rain and black ice on the roads by the weekend, ICBC has these
following tips to help you stay safe on the roads:
• Equip your vehicle: We issued an information bulletin earlier this
week to answer customers' questions about winter tires and insurance, but
preparing your vehicle for winter driving comes down to much more than just
choice of tires. Don't use cruise control on slippery roads; check your tire
pressure as they can deflate quickly in the cold; low-beam lights are more
effective in the snow; and keep your gas tank full to prevent freezing in
extreme temperatures. Keep a blanket in your car just in case you are
unfortunate enough to get stranded in these wintery conditions. You can find
more tips on icbc.com.
• Adapt our behaviour: While preparing our vehicles for winter
driving is vital, nothing is more important than adjusting our behaviour as
drivers. When we see a speed limit - say, 90km on a highway - that's the
limit in ideal road conditions. Conditions right now are not ideal so slow
down and leave more space between you and other vehicles on the road to give
you the time and distance needed to best avoid any potential hazards.
• When things get slippery: One of the most challenging road hazards
at this time of year is black ice - it's virtually impossible to see ahead
of time, and that's why it's so important to slow down and try and
anticipate what's ahead by seeing how the vehicles around you are moving on
the road. While it can be a natural reaction to slam on the brakes, the best
thing you can do is try and slow your vehicle down to regain traction - ease
off the accelerator and shift to a lower gear if possible. If you need to
use the brake, be aware of the differences between using standard and ABS
• Know your journey: One of the most challenging aspects of driving
in B.C. is that road conditions can vary greatly depending on where you are
in the province. If you're setting out from the Lower Mainland and driving
to the Southern Interior, for example, you need to know that the Ministry of
Transportation and Infrastructure can designate winter tires to be required
on certain roads and highways. If you are driving on these roads without
winter tires, police can ticket you and make you turn back. Drivebc.ca is a
great resource to consult ahead of time.
• If the worst happens: If you are unfortunate enough to be in a
crash we know it can be a frightening and stressful situation, but we're
dedicated in providing a hassle-free experience and we're available 24 hours
a day, seven days a week, to assist our customers. Customers in the Lower
Mainland can reach us on our Dial-a-Claim line by calling 604-520-8222.
Those who are elsewhere in, or outside of, B.C. can dial 1-800-910-4222.
Download ICBC's Claims Card to help you record the information you need at
the scene of a crash.
At ICBC, we're
committed to our 3.2 million customers and their safety on the road. We license
and insure drivers and vehicles across the province through our service centres,
plus a network of more than 900 independent brokers and government agent
offices. Claims customers are served through local offices and our award-winning
Dial-a-Claim call centre. We add value to B.C. communities - our road safety
investments help create safer roads, lead to fewer crashes, and help keep our
rates stable. To find out more, visit
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