We are all hoping that this last cold snap is just that — the last. However, as all Kootenay residents know, winter rarely gives up so easily. Second, and third, winter is probably just around the corner.
Which is why Road Safety at Work, which promotes safe winter driving, is urging Kootenay residents to put off changing out of snow tires just yet.
“Winter tires provide better traction and stopping performance below 7C and on wet, snowy, and icy roads,” says Louise Yako, spokesperson for the 13th annual winter driving safety campaign. “Traction may be the difference between safely driving on roads and being involved in a serious crash.”
Winter tires or chains are required on most routes in B.C. from October 1 to April 30. For select highways not located through mountain passes and/or high snowfall areas, tire and chain requirements end March 31.
If you are planning any sort of road trip this spring, be aware that late season snow storms are entirely possible, especially on the higher elevation passes, and follow the tips provided by Road Safety at Work
• Know before you go. Before leaving, check DriveBC.ca for updated road and weather conditions.
• Avoid driving when road and weather conditions are poor, if possible. If you have to drive when the weather is poor, make sure you and your vehicle are well prepared.
• Use four matched winter tires with the three-peaked mountain/snowflake logo. Keep a winter driving emergency kit in your vehicle.
• Prepare yourself by knowing how to drive for the conditions before you get behind the wheel. Even the most experienced drivers can’t predict how their or the other drivers’ vehicle will react in snow or on ice.
• Follow safe work procedures if you drive for work, even if it’s only occasionally, and report any unsafe conditions to your supervisor.
• Make sure, if you’re an employer with commercial vehicles, that drivers know when to carry chains and how to use them.