Whenever we get behind the wheel we must take extreme precautions, as we must not forget that it is one of the most dangerous means of transport safe driving in winter today. Therefore, among other things, it is also necessary to be prudent to have the car in good condition, and if you are thinking of buying a second-hand vehicle, verify it before buying it to avoid cheating. Remember that with the Royalty report, you can do it very easily and all online.
How many times have you driven in very adverse weather conditions? The truth is that we must exercise extreme caution whenever we take the vehicle, but in these cases much more. In general, we tend not to be very aware of the importance of having a car in good condition, and what to say if it is a second-hand car. We must always check the mechanical situation of a used car before buying it , and therefore if you are thinking of doing it, do not hesitate to ask for the Rooty report.
Although the climate of Mallorca gives us sunny and warm days even in winter, the truth is that we can not deny that even here, the winter months involve a whole series of inclement weather that, with greater or lesser intensity, can affect safe driving. The rain, the wind, the cold, the snow … are just some of the elements that can come to condition us when we are at the wheel, adding a certain degree of difficulty and unpredictability that we should mitigate taking into account advice such as the following:
How to safe driving in winter with bad weather
When we make a trip, we are always exposed to the weather changing quickly and we have to expose ourselves to extreme rain, snow, hail or ice on the asphalt with the consequent danger that this may be suffering an accident. For all this, we would like to share with you a series of tips that you should follow to drive when it is winter and bad weather.
Have the vehicle ready
It seems silly, but although it seems sometimes that the car a prior is in good condition, it is always highly recommended and necessary, to carry out a verification of a complete vehicle . You should check the following aspects of the car:
Review of the car, both its internal and external elements
First, it would be convenient to check the condition of the engine oil, steering fluid, cooling system, antifreeze fluid levels or windshield fluid. The checking of the tires is also vital, since you have to check that the drawing is in optimal conditions to have a good grip on asphalt with little grip.
The safety belts deserve a separate mention, since this safety element allows us not to move inside the car if there are losses of control of the same for unfavorable conditions for our vehicle (in addition to having the function of protecting ourselves in case of accident to avoid serious injuries or deaths instantly). So, never lose sight of this internal element of your car, as it is able to save your life and save you a lot of trouble, as we do in Rolty detecting possible hidden defects that can have second-hand cars.
Other fundamental aspects are the brakes of the car as they are an important part of safety when driving. The lights are another key factor, and therefore we should check that all the bulbs work well. Finally, within this point, we would like to influence the windshield wipers and for that we have to check the condition of the tires (this should be looked at and checked to see if they remove the water from the windshield wipers).
Check the status of the roads and other recommendations prior to the trip
Before going on a trip, it is advisable to check how the roads are located in order to avoid traveling in bad conditions. It is also necessary to always leave with the gas tank full, not only for the fact of not being pulled, but in case you have to spend the night outdoors, and you need to use the heating of the car.
Safety equipment in the car
There are some tools and objects that we should always have in our car, just in case we get stuck on the road. We always recommend having these objects inside the vehicle:
- Blankets for the cold
- Reflective coats
- Reflective vests
- Utility knife
Cat : indispensable tool, just in case we puncture a wheel, and we need to change it.
Scraper / plastic card / alcohol : necessary to remove the ice from the windshield (in another post we talk about tips to keep the car when it is cold ).
A safe driving that is not abrupt and at high speeds will always be the most advisable when the weather conditions are bad. We must always carry the right speed and not make aggressive changes of direction or more commonly referred to as “swerves”. What we have to do is gently turn the steering wheel of our car to maintain control of the vehicle and not have the feeling that the car dominates us and does not go where we want. If as we have said before, we perform swerves, there will be a high understeer that will force us to make corrections with the steering wheel to keep us on the asphalt.
Use chains or snow tires
If for any reason we do not have snow tires (we would only have to use them if we were traveling on high mountain roads or roads with high snow or ice), you should always carry in the trunk a set of chains for the 4 wheels of the vehicle . If for whatever reason, the dangerousness of the road prevents traffic in a section, there will be security agents or light signals that will prevent us from entering as a precaution.
In the safe driving school the teacher always told us that we had to maintain a safe distance from the car in front of us. Well, in bad weather we must increase that distance in case we have to make a braking, and in this way there is more travel between vehicles and therefore a collision can be avoided. Remember that the time it takes to stop a car in conditions of rain or snow is much greater than in dry conditions.
We have already talked a little in the first point of this section, but it is worth highlighting again and taking into account that the good functioning of this component is important. Its main function is that we see and that we can be seen by other drivers. In very unfavorable conditions, such as rain and fog, it is advisable to have the front and rear fog lights on, but you also have to know when to put the lights on so as not to look like a spaceship and not disturb other drivers. For this reason, let’s talk about what lights should be used and when to use them:
Cross lights or “short”
This name is usually the original and which we knew when we got the card, but at a colloquial level, his name is “short lights”. When it is nighttime they are always used under normal conditions on all roads and also in garages, tunnels and reversible or additional lanes that are able to travel in the opposite direction to the usual. By day, they are used when conditions are of low visibility.
Road lights or “long”
We will only use them on roads with poor visibility and when there is no vehicle in front of us to avoid disturbing you. Neither should be used when cars come in the opposite lane to which you circulate at that time. In town, they are never used.
Front fog lights
These lights are not obligatory and in particular many cars do not carry them. We must use them in conditions in which the crossing are not enough to see well (when there is heavy rain or fog).
Rear fog lights
They are mandatory when there is fog, rain or heavy snow, so that the cars behind us can see us well.
They indicate the position and width of the car, therefore they always accompany the short, long or fog lights. Turn them on when you pair the car in any way along with the emergency ones.
They turn on automatically just like the brakes. Whenever we put the reverse gear, they will turn on automatically and they are always white.
They are used when a car is stopped to indicate that it is standing on the road or the shoulder. Also when a moving car has to warn that there is a danger to the rest of the vehicles.
Tips for safe driving on Winter Holidays
During the winter holidays, many Chileans find the ideal opportunity to travel as a family, so it is to be expected that car travel will increase considerably throughout Chile.
According to statistics from the Cohasset, in July last year -the month of the winter holidays-, 6 thousand 238 road accidents occurred nationwide. In them, 135 people lost their lives and more than 4 thousand 260 were injured of different consideration.
According to Alberto Escobar, expert in road safety at Automóvil Club de Chile, “despite the innumerable calls to plan trips and drive on the defensive, it is really worrying the irresponsible and reckless behavior that our motorists have these days. There are many who feel they have the right to make their behavior more flexible, with the ability to freely transgress the rules of the traffic and exceed the established speed limits in urban areas and roads . “
Escobar added that “unlike other years, in this winter vacation the audit will be focused on the new legislative change that extends the use of safety seats until 9 years. Beyond the fines that can be exposed, it is a moral and legal obligation of parents to take care of their children at all times, especially in the face of situations of eventual risk such as car trips. The use of these equipment prevents between 50% and 80% the fatal and serious injuries of children before a road accident. “
Aware that this is a date that considerably increases travel by car with minors, Automóvil Club de Chile delivers a series of recommendations for you to have a safe and responsible trip:
Speed Limits: It is necessary not to exceed the maximum permitted speeds and the optimum is to go to a cruising speed of 90 KLM / H to have a safe driving. A very basic exercise for drivers is: If on the road the driver distinguishes the letters and numbers of the license plate of the car ahead, it means that it does not have the necessary safety distance to reach braking and avoid a collision.
Child Retention Systems: For those parents or adults who decide not to transport children under 9 years old in a child restraint system or decide to transfer children under 12 years of age irresponsibly in the passenger seat, in both cases they are subject to fines of 1 , 5 to 3 UTM, plus the suspension of the license.
Road Emergency: In the case of being in a panne on the road, it is advisable to turn on the lights immediately and stay in the car. Only when traffic permits, you must descend with the retro-reflective vest and you must install the triangles nimbly to warn the other motorists of the emergency. The use of the vest will make it visible to the rest of the drivers from a distance greater than 150 meters and will reduce the risks that can occur in those routes that are poorly lit.
Driver and Passenger Safety: The number of passengers that will be in the car must be considered, which is directly related to the weight that will be transported and the fuel expense that will be included in the trip. Regardless of whether it is a short or long journey, you should always use the seat belt and verify that your passengers also use it, including those in the back seat, which only reaches 3% in our country.
Kilometers driven: the driver must not drive more than 200 kilometers in a row without stopping. It is necessary, at least, for five minutes to stop to stretch the legs and reactivate the circulation. Avoid driving tired or with a feeling of stress and you have to be very careful with the use of medications, especially antiallergic and others that generate drowsiness and reduce the ability to react.
Vehicle Load: According to the studies carried out by the institution, close to 40% of the load used in trips is not used and there are others. It is necessary to ensure that you carry what is just and necessary, accommodate the weight of the luggage in an equitable manner and, for no reason, leave loose luggage in the car, since before any impact or deceleration it can become a projectile.
Tips for safe driving a rental car
When you arrive at the branch to pick up your rental car , do not forget to bring your ID, your driving license and your credit card.
If you would like a delivery to a hotel, a garage, a company or another place that is not one of the Sixt branches , please ask for it when making the reservation.
A responsible and safe driving at all times. Keep doors closed where there are unoccupied seats, to protect yourself from unwanted visitors when you stop at a red light.
Keeping windows open can be dangerous. Keep them closed, especially at night
Finally, drive carefully
To avoid any risk of theft , leave your vehicle in a safe place, such as a parking lot, a hotel, a garage, a well-lit or guarded car park
Make sure you have closed the doors and windows of the vehicle
In most large cities, an expensive surprise awaits you if you have not paid for parking. To remove this fine they will need time and depending on the city a lot of money. So be sure to pay for your parking.
Be careful when leaving the vehicle
Criminals not only attack the cars themselves, but also their contents.
Mobile phones, cameras and wallets should not be left visible inside the car
Valuable items should not be left in the car overnight, either inside the boot or glove box
Use the glove box key
Return of the vehicle
Car keys should be given to Sixt employees in uniform, or (depending on the branch) put the key in the return boxes.
If you wish to return the vehicle to a hotel, garage, company or other location other than one of Six’s branches, thank you for the authorization of the agency in advance.
If you have not pre-booked an offer for a prepaid deposit, make sure you return the vehicle with the full tank, to avoid an additional cost for gasoline plus a service fee.
Finally, safe driving in winter is more dangerous. Statistically the most fatal accidents occur during the cold months and it is that it rains, it snows, it is cold, which generates a dangerous frame, in which it is really difficult to drive correctly and without risks. Used cars Among the important points to take into account for the safety of all the members of the vehicle is having good tires, because with it the car can apply the maximum force possible to advance, brake or change direction.
But for the tires to work properly, other very important elements that are linked to the wheels come into play. These elements are the traction, steering and braking systems and it is essential that they work properly so that the stability of the car is totally safe. The fact that the vehicle is equipped with safety control is mandatory since November 1, 2014, how do you know if your car has this system? It is very easy: its yellow warning light, a car with two sinuous tracks or a circular arrow with a danger triangle inside that briefly lights up when the car starts.