January 21, 2019
For many drivers, travelling in wintry conditions can be daunting. Thousands of people rely on their wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAV) for their independence. We’ve put together our essential tips to keep you safe, confident and mobile, even when the mercury drops.
Plan Your Journey
It’s sensible to have a plan in place if bad weather is expected. Be sure that you only travel if absolutely necessary and observe any weather warnings in place. If it’s safe to travel and you decide to brave the chill, keep an eye on the weather forecast and the traffic report as things can change quickly. Whether you drive your mobility car yourself or a friend or family member drives you, make sure someone else knows when you’re due to arrive at your destination.
Before starting a journey, check over the essential components of your car. Make sure your headlights are working and that your wiper blades are in good order. Check tyre pressure and ensure screen wash is full. The better you look after your car, the better your car will look after you!
Keep your Car Kitted Out
It pays to think ahead. If the worst happens and you do get stuck in bad weather, you’ll never regret being prepared! Keep an ‘essentials kit’ in the car. Warm clothes, bottled water and snacks will tide you over for short delays. A shovel, torch and warning triangle could help you out of a sticky situation if it’s safe to do so. Other things to consider are a mobile phone and charger, a good map, Sat Nav, a first-aid kit and a vehicle recovery number.
When you finally get on the road, be vigilant. Bad weather can roll in quickly and the weather in the UK is changeable at the best of times. Adapting your driving to the conditions is vital to avoid any mishaps. When roads are wet, they can be slippery and stopping distances are dramatically increased. Remember to increase your stopping distance and be gentle on the breaks. In hail, sleet or snow, don’t panic. Accelerate, brake and change gear gently and gradually. If you do get into a skid, stay calm. Don’t brake and instead slowly decrease pressure on the accelerator to slow down.
Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be a whizz behind the wheel this winter!