I am a born and raised Canadian and understand as an Ontarian that my winters will include snow, slush and icy conditions. I was taught as a child to wear my snow boots so I had a better grip when I walked the sidewalks (and my parents preferred my feet stayed dry too). We also protect ourselves from the elements by adding coats, scarves, hats and gloves to our person.
Now, why do some people choose not to outfit their cars with the same layers of protection? Washer fluid to clean the windows, brushes to clear snow, and snow tires to grip the streets?
“Many Canadian motorists still choose all-season tires because those tires meet their personal needs based on driving habits, where they live and their comfort level with winter driving.” ~ Tire and Rubber Association of Canada
I have always had snow tires and believe they work more efficiently than all season tires.
“Winter tires handle winter driving conditions so well because they provide the best possible contact between your vehicle and the road. Whether the road surface is snowy or icy, wet or dry, winter tires offer optimal traction in all cold-weather conditions.” ~ Tire and Rubber Association of Canada.
On this snowy and icy day, I wonder if the slipping and sliding on the road is due to a lack of snow tires or drivers that have never been taught to drive in winter conditions. If someone is not comfortable driving during heavy snow or ice, they should stay off the roads for the safety of everyone. Driving 20km/h under the speed limit in the inside lane while riding the brake is a recipe for an accident. Slowing down is important but not in a way that disrupts the flow and safety of traffic.
To avoid this problem, EDUCATE yourself. CAA has a free brochure on their website about winter preparedness and so does the Ministry of Transportation. You could also take a 90- or 180-minute course through Young Drivers on Winter Driving.
I know some will balk at the idea of spending money on tires or lessons. To off-set some of these costs, effective January 1, 2016, the Ontario Ministry of Finance requires all insurance companies to offer discounts for drivers who have snow tires on their car. You could also think of this as part of your commitment to owning a car just like paying for insurance and maintenance. And if none of these reasons win you over, think of this as an opportunity to Sprout Knowledge, become a more confident driver and protect your loved ones and others in your community.
In the comments, please share how you have prepared yourself for Winter Driving. And remember to follow us and SPROUT a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and Facebook!
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