The Arctic Blast - Driving In The Winter Months*

*This is a collaborative post*

Winter is well and truly upon us and unless you've been hiding under a rock I'm sure you'll have either experienced the recent arctic blast that swept across the UK or you'll at least have read about it in the news. 

We had our fair share of ice in Lancashire and I don't know about you lot but I personally hate driving in icy or snowy conditions. It always felt daunting before but now I'm twenty six weeks pregnant I'm even more nervous and wary than I was... Which brings me to the point of todays post! There are certain factors you ought to consider when you're driving in these winter months. 

Tips For Driving In Icy Weather

For starters you should allow more time for your journeys. I allow a good extra ten minutes each morning so I can take it easy as I'm travelling to work. Whilst many of the main roads have usually been gritted, many of the smaller rural areas and side streets haven't and these can prove lethal. 

It may even be worth investing in winter car tyres as they handle much better in icy conditions. Kwik Fit in particular are worth a mention as one of my go-to personal favourites. In fact you may remember in a recent post I mentioned my unfortunate start to the new year when I had a tyre puncture. It's safe to say that Kwik Fit have come to my rescue on many an occasion. They're super efficient, speedy and their tyres don't break the bank. 

When the weather is really dire there may even be weather warnings from the MET Office advising not to drive unless absolutely necessary. Whilst sometimes driving seems unavoidable, it's also sensible to pay attention to these warnings and if you really don't have to drive then don't. If you do find driving unavoidable, try to stick to the main roads where the gritters have been. 

If you find yourself in a spot of bother, for example if your car slides on ice, do not panic or slam on the brakes. You can correct the car by turning into the slide. Ice Road Safety have helpful tips and videos on topics such as this if you're unsure of what to do. 

As simple as this one sounds, don't drive too fast. You're more likely to experience sliding on ice or even an accident if you're going too quickly. Also don't brake too harshly, instead you should squeeze the brakes gently and allow extra stopping time. 

Make sure you pack supplies in the event of a breakdown or on the off chance you get stranded in snow. Being pregnant I find this is even more paramount now as I wouldn't want to get caught stuck in a freezing blizzard at night with nothing to eat or to keep me warm. Pack items such as a thermal blanket, warm clothes, gloves, hat, high-vis jacket, winter boots, torch, batteries, food and drink, first aid kit, a small shovel, jump start cables, ice scraper, de-icer and an in car phone charger or portable battery charger.

Invest in breakdown cover to give you some peace of mind. Sadly gone are the days I can ring my dad to come rescue me so I've had to take out breakdown cover myself and it's not at all expensive. 

Make sure you have anti-freeze in your engine cooling system to prevent it from freezing over. 

Top up your screen wash so you can keep your windscreen clean and clear at all times.

Check your lights are all working properly. 

Lastly, don't forget to allow time for de-icing your car every morning or else you'll find yourself running late and rushing.

This isn't by any means a completely exhaustive list but it's certainly a good starting point. You can find even more tips for driving in winter conditions online so do have a peruse. Drive safely folks!

*Photo source Pexels

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