Oct 13 2010

Skate and Surf: A Guide to Winter Driving

Published by at 7:35 PM under Comm 208

“I cried and almost pooped my pants.” The glaring semi lights quickly approaching. Her car sliding down the center of the highway out of control Traci Regennitter is lucky to be alive. Fortunately, counter-steering herself to safety seconds before impact.

Nowadays, Traci has an SUV for her winter commutes. Her Ford Mustang is stored for roughly $100 until mid-April. For most this isn’t an option. Traci’s advice “You have to winterize your vehicle.”

Wayne Monroe works for Mr. Tire and offered added advice. Wayne’s main point, “winterizing your vehicle is not only about the car itself. “ When I asked how much it would cost to get my car ready for the icy roads, “about $15 or $20” was his reply. A few calls to other shops confirmed Wayne’s service estimate.  Check tires, battery, heater, all fluids and wiper blades, a few of the inspections.

On January 15th, 2007 TODAYshow.com ran a story about winterizing your vehicle. The site offered ten tips. A well-serviced vehicle and, as Wayne mentioned, a well-prepared driver were number one.

Number nine on the list was to preparing an emergency kit. Having useful things such as blankets, extra clothes, and a small shovel seem obvious. On the contrary, keeping paper towels, sand and food (with hard candy being one of the articles suggestions.)

Additionally, number ten on the Today show’s list may save lives. It deals with knowing what to do if ever stranded. Why had hard candy made the emergency kit list? Sure hard candy wouldn’t freeze but it wouldn’t feed either. Consequently, it isn’t to sustain. It’s to keep your mouth from getting to dry.

Not wandering unless knowing where to go and wearing the extra clothes for warmth again seem common sense. Yet, would you ever think to leave a window cracked despite blistering winds outside? This, “so that snow and ice don’t seal the car shut.”

Keeping a full tank of gas, another beneficial tip. Most commuters are starving students, the last thing anyone wants to spend money on is gas. However, the alternative to that is a frozen gas line. That costly repair bill paling in comparison to the few extra bucks at the pump.

Here’s hoping you never feel like Traci did that day.  With a little luck and these helpful tips, you should skate right on through to spring with no reason to soil.

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