BOISE – Winter storms are impacting many parts of Idaho this week, and AAA is sharing important safety tips for drivers.

  • Check road and weather conditions before you go.  Keep in mind that conditions may change throughout the day and at different elevations, including visibility.
  • In addition to your own comfort level driving on ice and snow, consider the skill level of others who will be sharing the road.  In some cases, it may be better to wait until conditions improve.
  • Dress in layers, rather than bulky coats, for freedom of movement.
  • Clear away snow, ice, and road grime from windows, headlights, brake lights, and your backup camera.
  • In addition to snow and ice, which are especially dangerous on curves, hills, bridges, and shaded areas of the roadway, actively scan the road for sliding vehicles, brake lights, debris, and wildlife.
  • During bad weather, double or even triple your following distance – about 6 to 9 seconds from the vehicle in front of you.
  • Make a smart BET by checking your battery, engine, and tires, especially before a longer trip.
  • Don’t blindly follow your GPS.  If a road hasn’t been properly maintained, choose an alternate route or wait until conditions improve.
  • In the rare event that you need to leave your vehicle at the roadside, leave a note on your dashboard with your first name, phone number, the time, and the direction you traveled.  If you get a ride with a Good Samaritan, note their name and license plate as well.

“Whether you’re new to driving on snow and ice, or if it’s just been a while, consider practicing in a large open parking lot where you can get the feel for how your vehicle handles without putting anyone at risk,” says AAA Idaho public affairs director Matthew Conde.  “Please watch your speed, ditch the distractions, and focus on safe driving all winter.”