Take care on the roads this winter

17/06/2020 8:53am

Over winter we all need to take extra care to make sure we are driving to suit the road conditions; that goes for motorists, cyclists and motorcyclists too.

Firstly, make sure you have good visibility. Take the time to demist and de-ice your windscreen, along with all windows and mirrors, before you hit the road. It’s important you can see all other road users and you are not just peering out of a small hole in the ice.

Gritted roads

Gritting the road does not remove all risk. You may only get up to 15% more grip on a gritted road than an icy road, so there are some things you need to keep in mind.

  • Stopping distances can increase by up to ten times
  • Allow more time for your journey, you may need to travel slower than normal
  • Increase your following distances so that you can stop safely if needed
  • Watch out for ice in shady areas and on bridges
  • Check your tyre pressure regularly and maintain your tyres to ensure good handling, steering and safety, as well as comfort, long tyre life and optimum fuel economy.
  • Make sure that you can see all other road users through your windscreens and are visible to other road users especially by wearing light colours if you are on a bicycle or motorcycle.


This is a major issue in winter so here are some ways to reduce the risk.

  • Drive with dipped headlights in rain, snow or fog to improve driver vision.
  • Use your vehicle’s demister or air conditioning to keep windows clear.
  • Watch out for sun strike from the winter sunlight. Make sure your sun visor is well positioned.
  • Keep your windscreen cleaner reservoir topped up so that your windscreen is clean and easy to see out of.
  • Cover your windscreen on frosty nights or use an ice scraper or cold water to totally clear your screen of ice.   

Above all, remember the speed limit isn’t a target.  The safest way to get where you need to go this winter is to slow down and drive to the conditions.