Warning Of Icy Roads In Suffolk

As Suffolk was hit by more snow flurries and sub zero temperatures overnight, police have issued advice on safe driving.

Deteriorating weather conditions tend to lead to a surge in the number of road traffic collisions.

Chief Inspector Mike Bacon, from the Constabulary’s Roads Policing Unit, says: “Rain, sleet and snow, plus dark mornings and evenings unfortunately mean more accidents on our roads.

“It is inevitable that the cold weather will make driving more hazardous, but there are a few simple precautions that any driver can take:

“Only undertake necessary journeys if it is icy and keep an eye on the weather forecast.

“If you have to go out, take a fully charged mobile phone and emergency clothing and warm drinks.

“Make sure your vehicle is up to scratch, with well maintained lights and tyres and carry de-icer. Importantly don't drive until the windscreen is free from frost or mist.

“Allow more time for your journey with additional stops en route, as winter driving tends to be more demanding. And if there are poor weather conditions and visibility, remember to slow down and use dipped headlights.”


Suffolk Police’s top tips for winter driving include:

During wintry weather conditions:

·         Ask yourself – is your journey essential?

·         Check the local and national weather forecasts.

·         Listen to local and national radio for travel information.

·         Tell someone at your destination what time you expect to arrive.

·         Make sure you are equipped with warm clothes, food, boots and a torch. In snowy conditions, take a spade.

·         Clear your windows and mirrors before you set out and carry a screen scraper and de-icer.  

Vehicle condition

In winter it is even more important to check your vehicle is well maintained and serviced.

·         Keep the lights, windows and mirrors clean and free from ice and snow.

·         Keep your battery fully charged.

·         Add anti-freeze to the radiator and winter additive to the windscreen washer bottles.

·         Make sure wipers and lights are in good working order.

·         Check that tyres have plenty of tread depth and are maintained at the correct pressure.

Adjust your driving to the conditions

·         Hail, heavy snow and rain reduce visibility.

·         Use dipped headlights and reduce your speed.   

·         Dazzle from winter sun can be dangerous. Keep a pair of sunglasses handy and slow down.

Rain

In wet weather, stopping distances will be at least double those required for stopping on dry roads. This is because your tyres have less grip on the road. In wet weather:

·        You should keep well back from the vehicle in front. This will increase your ability to see and plan ahead.

·        The rain and spray from vehicles may make it difficult to see and be seen.  

·         Remember - test your brakes if you have driven through a section of flooded roads before you drive at normal speed.

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