Winter Weather Safety Tips

Winter Driving Tips

Below are a few helpful tips to help you travel safely this the winter. Carry the following items in your car at all times in case of emergency:
  • Blanket
  • Booster cables
  • Cloth/paper towels
  • Flashlight with fresh batteries
  • Ice scraper
  • Small bag of abrasive material
  • Snow brush
  • Snow shovel
  • Traction mats
  • Warning devices (flare, triangles)
Have your car winterized. Have your car’s electric, brake, tire, exhaust, heating, and windshield wipers/washer system checked by a reputable mechanic.

Keep a safe stopping distance between you and the car in front of you. It takes longer to stop on wet or icy roads. Keep your gas tank at least half-full. A full tank prevents a gas line freeze-up.

Never warm up a car in an enclosed area, such as a garage. The engine releases carbon monoxide that can be deadly. And, please remember to slow down!

Give the Plows a Break

Driving a snow plow is one of the toughest jobs around. Drivers must maneuver a 27-ton truck through the City’s narrow, winding streets, dealing with foggy windows, swirling snow, slippery roads and icy intersections. So please, give our drivers a break and leave lots of distance between your vehicle and our plows.
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When Driving Behind a Snow Plow

Don’t pass a snow plow unless your visibility is perfectly clear and it is completely safe for you, the snowplow driver, and others around.
  • Pass plows at your own risk. The plow blades not only plow the snow but also kick up rocks and road debris as the blades scrape the pavement. These rocks come flying off those blades at high speeds, and can crack windshields and damage cars.
  • Don’t stop too closely behind a stopped snowplow. The driver may be preparing to back up and may not see you. If you can’t see his side mirrors, he can’t see you.
  • In winter weather, don't park your vehicle on the street. This allows the snow plow crews to do a better job of clearing streets and minimizes the risk of damage to vehicles. Also, during many storm events we put an emergency snow parking ban in effect which prohibits parking on any street until the ban is lifted.
  • Snow plows create a swirl of snow that can blind the driver of a car following too closely, or cars approaching from the opposite direction.
  • Some of the snow trucks may also be dispensing salt from the back of the truck. This is just one more reason not to follow too closely. Keep back at least 50 feet.