Every winter, New York City gets its fair share of cold weather and snow. However, this past weekend’s snow storm was one for the record books as the official snow accumulation total for New York City was recorded at 26.8 inches, an amount that nearly topped the record 26.9 inches that fell on the city during the winter of 2006.
As city crews work to clear the roads and residents attempt to dig out from the mounds of snow covering the walkways, sidewalks and parked vehicles; city officials are concerned about expected traffic delays and slippery road conditions. With temperatures this week expected to climb above the freezing mark, snow will constantly be melting and refreezing which can make roads, crosswalks and sidewalks especially slick and treacherous.
For residents who plan to brave the roadways, it’s important to keep the following safe winter driving tips in mind.
- Prior to starting out, ensure that a vehicle’s wheels are properly inflated, fluids are topped off and headlights and taillights are functioning.
- While it’s important to obey traffic laws at all times, it’s especially important when road conditions are poor. Obeying the speed limit, providing other motorists and pedestrians with the right-of-way and staying a safe distance behind leading vehicles are all things that can reduce a driver’s chances of being involved in or causing a traffic accident.
- Pay attention to road conditions as well as how your vehicle handles. Not all vehicles are created alike and this fact becomes even more apparent when attempting to traverse snow and ice-packed roads. While heavier vehicles and those with snow tires and four-wheel drive may handle better in winter weather, no vehicle or driver is immune to icy road conditions.
- In the event your vehicle does start to slide out of control, it’s important to avoid slamming on the brakes and steering in the opposite direction. If you steer into, rather than against a slide and gently tap the brakes you increase your chances of pulling out of a slide and avoiding an accident.
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