A message from OPSEU/SEFPO’s official insurance provider, RGI Group.
Winter is on its way with cold temperatures, fog, snow and ice. Now is the time to prepare your vehicle for hazardous conditions and treacherous driving.
Here are our top tips for a safe winter driving season:
- Choose the right shoes – or tires, as the case may be.
Many vehicle owners are not aware that their “all-season tires” are not actually rated for driving in all seasons. Because of the composition of the rubber – harder, with less grip – “all-season” tires are really only rated for spring, summer and fall driving.
Made with softer rubber, and deeper treads, winter tires are a must for handling the harsh snow/sleet/ice conditions of our Canadian winters. Have your winter tires on by November!
- Take it off – the snow and ice, that is.
We’ve all seen it. You are barreling down the highway and suddenly a huge chunk of snow or ice comes flying off the car ahead of you. White-knuckles and a steady hand are required to navigate that mess, and the worst thing about this situation is that it is completely avoidable.
It is important to take the time to clean off your own hood properly, or you could end up with windshield full of snow, and completely impaired visibility. But wiping off your vehicle is a safety issue not just for you, but for other drivers on the road. If your headlights aren’t clearly visible, or if you are throwing off chunks of ice and snow, you are creating a hazardous situation for other drivers.
- Ensure that all fluids are at their proper levels.
In cold winter temperatures, it is always a good idea to check your antifreeze level and ensure it is properly rated for the temperatures in your area of the country. Windshield washer fluid is used year-round, however much more of it is utilized in the winter due to the salt and chemicals used on roads.
- No matter what the season, it is always important to leave enough room between you and the vehicle ahead of you.
During the winter months, however, this is even more relevant. It is critical that you are paying attention to the road conditions before you get behind the wheel, as this will significantly influence how quickly and safely you can slow down or stop. If you happen to hit a car in front, you will run the risk of incurring a charge of following too close.
Be prepared for winter by taking the above steps as well as maintaining slower driving speeds and allowing a safe stopping distance during winter driving conditions.
RGI’s team of insurance professionals is standing by to answer your call. If you have questions about your insurance, we invite you to call us and speak to one of our team members.
We are available Monday to Friday, 9am until 4:30pm.
Toll Free: 833.90.GROUP