Driving Through The Winter Season

Here at Phantom we know that driving in winter conditions can put even the safest of fleets and drivers at risk. Unforgiving weather can cause unexpected dangers and can reduce the visibility and reliability of your vehicle. Being able to track your fleet in these hazardous conditions offers peace of mind and better security for your drivers. It is important to know precisely where they are should anything happen, or if the weather changes in that area, it means that you can communicate this accurately. Listed below are some useful tips to help keep you as safe as possible when driving in winter conditions: 

Be prepared 

Plan your trip accordingly by checking weather forecasts and possible construction areas along your route as well as chart fuel and meal stop locations. You should always allow extra time for traffic delays too. Some weather institutions even have a tool that allows you to receive severe weather alerts in your area on your phone via email or text message. 

Do a thorough pre-trip inspection 

Do a visual, hands-on inspection and check all important items including tires, wiper blades and fluid and lights.  Check your vehicle often.  Also, shifting product and icy roads are not a good combination.  If possible, drivers should monitor the shipper's loading procedures to ensure weight has been evenly distributed within their trailer. 

Slow down and give yourself extra space 

Compensate for poor traction by slowing down and making all movements gently - never drive faster than the conditions allow. Double or triple your following distance and never tailgate.  Keep at least ten seconds for following distance when driving on snow and ice covered roads.  Turn OFF the cruise control – you shouldn'’t use cruise control or overdrive on icy roads. Visit our website for the best in fleet tracking systems today! 

Beware of black ice 

Black ice can fool drivers into thinking it is water. This shiny form of ice is one of the most slippery road conditions.  Black ice is likely to form first under bridges & overpasses, in shady spots & at intersections.  Bridges and overpasses also tend to freeze before roadways. 

Braking and accelerating 

 Drivers need to be aware of becoming overconfident if they have antilock brakes.  If the brakes happen to lock, release them to avoid sliding.  This will help to regain steering. Always brake gently to avoid skidding.

If you do begin to skid:
  • Take your foot off the gas and shift to neutral quickly
  • Then steer in the direction you want your car to go
  • Before the rear wheels stop skidding, shift into drive and gently press the accelerator
  • Do not slam on the brakes

Don't ask your truck to do more than it can

If you don't feel comfortable driving, park it! Here Phantom have listed some of the simple tips that can sometimes slip the mind, and also some helpful advice that can often be overlooked. With careful planning and adequate attention to the weather conditions, you can drive your lorry or truck and reach your intended destination safely, with you and your load intact.