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Shift into Winter Driving

Now that I’ve recovered from the sugar-coma of Halloween, I realized that it’s November and it’s time to put the snowbrush and ice scraper back in the car. Winter brings a lot of delightful moments, but driving through a snowstorm isn’t one of them, at least for me – I’m more of an après ski, cozy-up-by-the-fire kind of gal.

Red Car Driving Through Snow Storm

So for those readers who are like me, I thought it would be good to put on our snow pants and do a quick refresher of some salient winter-driving tips. Luckily, the Government of Ontario has put together an excellent collection of resources, tips, videos and other information about winter highway upkeep and road closures. Now while the road closures don’t apply to everyone (but check your own province’s Transportation Ministry site!), the tips, resources and videos are applicable across the country.

One of their best is the detailed 24-page handbook “Winter Driving: Be Prepared, Be Safe!” – definitely worth a download. But they summarized the most important advice that I’ve included below.

  • Make sure your vehicle is winter ready. Keep a winter survival kit in your vehicle.
  • Check weather and travel conditions before heading out by visiting the ministry’s Traveller Information Service website at:
  • Plan extra time to get to your destination and consider delaying or cancelling your trip in bad weather.
  • Notify a friend or family member of your destination and anticipated arrival time.
  • Always exercise caution and drive according to road and weather conditions.
  • Watch for the flashing lights of snow and ice control vehicles. When approaching them from behind, slow down, stay back and be patient. Do not pass around or between them. NEVER PASS A SNOW PLOW!
  • Move over for emergency vehicles.

And if you’d rather get your winter driving tips from a cute video, they’ve got you covered. Check out their “Top 10 Tips to Prep for Winter Driving” video.

As temperatures drop across the country and roads get covered in snow and ice, safe-driving practices should be even more top-of-mind. Do your part and be a conscientious driver on our winter roads.

~Kate T.


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