Winter weather driving preparations - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Winter weather driving preparations

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By David Kenney - bio | email

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - With all the problems drivers had last week during the freezing rain event, many people are making preparations early for the possibility of slick roads.

Interstate lanes could be covered in snow or possibly ice Wednesday evening, catching many drivers off guard.

However, there are several things motorists can do before they drive in these conditions, to lower their chance of having an accident.

Defensive driving instructor Jon Brodbeck, President of Mississippi Safety Services, says inexperience is one of the greatest causes of winter driving accidents in Mississippi.

"We don't get enough snow or ice for people to get used to it I grew up in Illinois, so I had a lot of experience when I came down here," Brodbeck said. "What I learned is because so even if you're the best driver, the other people on the road might not be."

Brodbeck says avoid driving altogether if you can when the roads become slick.

If anyone must venture out, Brodbeck says take it slow, and use antilock brakes correctly if you start to slide.

Keep even pressure on brakes, and that will limit how far you skid.

"The main thing is not to hit the brakes, not hit the gas, if you try to change your speed start to slip you're going to make the skid worse," Brodbeck said.

"We had a lot of people come in after the fact of storms where they slid, definitely if a tire has tread that it needs it will grip a whole lot better," said Kevin Payne of Big 10 Tires. "I don't think the snow is a big issue but with the rain it causes a lot of sliding, lot of wrecks."

Tire tread and inflation is also important in preventing vehicles from sliding.

Bald tires have a smaller chance of gripping the road, no matter what the conditions are, if the road is icy, there is almost no chance.

"I saw a wreck one time where the car had flipped upside down and caused a 3 car pileup, first thing I noticed was slick tread on it," Payne said.

Keeping a full tank of gas is also a good idea, just in case you run into gridlocked traffic, like people saw on the Stack last week.

Keeping warm clothes, a blanket, and something to eat inside the car is also a good idea, just in case you get stranded somewhere.

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