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Intensive Courses - Winter Driving Top Tips

16 / 12 / 21

Intensive Courses – Winter Driving Top Tips

Intensive Courses – Winter Driving Top Tips


Driving in the winter can be worrying for most drivers – never-mind for a learner driver! High winds, sleet, snow, and rain can all have an impact on your driving. In these conditions, it’s always better to plan your journey, and leave a bit of extra time to get to your destination. Being in a rush and dangerous conditions are not a good mix.
To help put you at ease, we have compiled a list of our winter driving top tips and advice!

Before setting off:

Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination!
According to the RAC, roads covered in snow, ice or even rainwater will extend the braking distance. It is suggested that braking distances can be doubled in wet conditions, and even as much as multiplied by 10 on snow or ice!
When driving in heavy rain, aquaplaning is common, and is a cause for many accidents throughout the year. This is when water builds up in between the tread of your tyres. A similar thing happens when driving in snow/ice – similarly, this snow can become compacted in the tyres’ tread, which again means control is lost much easier.
It is highly recommended that in these conditions you drive slow and steady, and always leave enough room between you and the car in front of you.

Make sure you have the essentials!
This might sound silly, but having a blanket (remember, no power = no heating!), a bottle of water, some snacks, a jump lead and a warning triangle could possibly go as far as saving your life!

Completely demist/deice your windows
According to the highway code, using a vehicle with parts or accessories that are in a ‘dangerous condition’ could get you a fine of £60 and three penalty points. Demisting and deicing is crucial – not only so that you don’t get a fine and three points, but because it is obviously quite unsafe. You should do this to all windows, and not just your windscreen. This will allow you to see as clearly as possible, in what might still be dangerous driving conditions. We recommend using an ice scraper (not just an old card!) and deicer – this will speed things up.

Setting off:

 

Pull off in second gear
Slowly easing your foot off the clutch in a higher gear reduces the chance of wheel-spin.

Limit the use of your brakes!
Skidding or sliding is most likely to happen because of brake use. Try to limit break usage as much as possible.

Leave plenty of room in between you and other cars
You should be doing this when driving in normal conditions, but it is extra important to do this in winter. This is to give you plenty of time to react if something happens to the cars in front, but also making sure you leave enough room so that you can minimise the amount you have to slow down (press the brakes).

Got Stuck?

Getting stuck can be stressful, but try to keep calm and don’t panic. Get the essentials out of the boot, wrap up in the blanket and consider your options. The first thing to try is to clear the snow from the wheels – this would help the tyres to get grip from the road. If this fails, you could try someone pushing the car from the back with someone slowly easing the clutch off in 2nd gear. Another alternative is to sprinkle snow or sand in front of your wheels – salt helps to melt the ice, and sand will add grip.

Pass Plus

If you’re feeling extra nervous about driving in extreme weather conditions, this is something a Pass Plus course could help you with. This is a 6 hour course, with no test at the end. Pass plus is about gaining more advanced experience, for example on motorways and in extreme weather conditions, which most people do not learn in a ‘practical’ way before you pass your driving test, plus there are also possible car insurance discounts with a lot of insurance companies.
Pass plus 6 hour course is £210. You pay a deposit of £60 on booking, with the final £150 when you meet your ADI (approved driving instructor.)

Are you a learner driver, and not feeling confident about driving? Why not learn to drive through a crash course. We offer 5-45 hour intensive and semi intensive driving courses. We cover England, Scotland and Wales – from Staffordshire, to Angus, to Norfolk!

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