MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Tuesday's snow storm has coated many Mid-South roads in a sheet of ice, turning driving conditions into a dangerous game.
Much of the snow melted in the afternoon sun, but after sunset, that melted snow froze into ice. Roads are expected to again re-freeze Wednesday night, meaning Thursday's morning commute may be more of the same.
The best tip is to simply not attempt to drive on these slippery roads, but the reality is that many people still have to go to work despite the conditions.
For those who must venture on the roads, it is important to know the best tips to drive safely on snow and ice.
AAA released a number of helpful tips to help you navigate safely on frozen streets.
An encompassing tip that is vital when driving on wintery roads is to stay alert. Do not drive if you are tired, make sure your tires are properly inflated, do not use cruise control, wear your seatbelt, and pay close attention to other drivers.
Also, make sure to keep your gas tank at least half full to avoid a gas line freeze-up.
You should also avoid using your parking brake in cold, rainy or snowy weather.
- When you hit the streets, take it slow. Give yourself plenty of extra time to arrive at your destination.
- Accelerate and decelerate slowly. Using the gas slowly is the best way to regain traction and avoid skids. It takes longer to slow down on icy roads, so be sure to take time to slow down for a stoplight.
- Give other cars plenty of space. It's recommended you give 8 to 10 seconds between you and the vehicle in front of you.
- Don't stop unless you have to. It takes more inertia to start moving from a full stop versus how much it takes to speed up while still rolling. If you can slow down enough to keep rolling until a traffic light changes, do so.
- Don't power up hills. Applying extra gas on snow-covered roads starts spinning wheels. Try to get going before you reach the hill and let that inertia carry you to the top. When you hit the top, reduce your speed and go slowly down the hill. Don't stop going up a hill.
Again, the best tip is to simply avoid the roads altogether. But if you must drive, heed these tips and keep you and other drivers safe during winter weather.