Winter Driving Tips

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Stormy, snowy day? Cowlitz County Department of Public Works offers these tips for getting home safely.

  • Drive for conditions – slower speeds, slower acceleration, slower steering and slower braking in winter conditions.
  • Use your headlights.
  • Don't use cruise control.
  • Four-wheel and all-wheel drive vehicles will not stop or steer better in icy conditions.
  • Leave extra room between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you. And remember, big trucks take longer to stop.
  • Slow down when approaching intersections, off-ramps, bridges or shady spots.
  • Brush the snow off your vehicle, especially your lights, before you drive. It makes you more visible plus snow and ice flying off a vehicle can be dangerous to other drivers.
  • If you find yourself behind a snowplow, stay behind it until it is safe to pass. Remember that a snowplow driver has a limited field of vision. Stay back (15 car lengths) until you're sure it is safe to pass or until the plow pulls off the road.
  • Slow down and be extra cautious near the chain-up and removal areas. There are often people out of their vehicles moving around.