Our Northern family members like to mock us Southerners for not being well-equipped to drive in the Georgia snow. But here’s the thing, guys- the beautiful Georgia snow only tends to arrive once or twice a year. With only a few snowfalls each season, there’s not much of an opportunity to become a pro-driver in the snow. And while drivers in colder climates may have invested in snow tires and all-wheel-drive vehicles, us Georgians are not as prepared. Hey, can you blame us Georgians? It’s a fact. Many Atlantans do not know how to drive in snow and ice in Georgia. But, we’re not blaming you!
Nonetheless, it’s very important to learn how to drive in snow to maximize your safety and those around you. Follow our winter driving tips, including how to turn in the snow, how to drive up a hill in the snow, and how to regain control in ice, to learn how to drive in the snow in Georgia.
First and foremost, if you don’t have to drive anywhere, please stay home! However, if you do have to drive or have found yourself stuck in the snow, please follow our tips below for driving in the snow safely in Georgia.
DON’Ts for safe driving in snow and ice:
- DON’T drive while fatigued. Make sure you get a proper amount of sleep before taking on any winter weather driving.
- DON’T warm up your car in an enclosed space, such as your garage. Instead, open your garage and pull OUT of the garage, before warming up your car. Idling a car in the garage, even with the garage open, is extremely dangerous and will expose you to harmful carbon monoxide and other poisonous gases. If you have an attached garage to your house, the toxic fumes can enter your house.
- DON’T use your emergency brake in cold, rainy, and snowy weather. In cold temperatures, the emergency brake cable can become frozen and may fail to release. If you can, park in a garage to avoid this. If you have to park outside and it freezes, do not attempt to drive your vehicle.
- Solution: If your emergency brake cable freeze, either wait, or put your car on a jack and use a hairdryer to speed up the process.
How to Turn in the Snow and How to Correct a Slide:
If you are driving in the snow, remember: the higher the speed, the more difficult it is to correct a slide. If you are sliding or fish-tailing, you are going too fast for the conditions. When you are sliding in icy conditions, please do the following:
- Don’t use your brakes. You never want to brake and turn at the same time.
- Turn into the slide: Turn your wheels in the same direction that the rear of the vehicle is sliding. You want to “turn into the slide”, which means if the back of your car slides to the right, turn your car to the right. When the car straightens out, also straighten the steering wheel.
- Avoid panicking and don’t over-correct your wheel. Over-steering can give your car angular momentum. This means your car will keep rotating in full-spin. Over-correcting can make your car rotate faster which results in a car spinning out.
- When taking a turn in the snow or ice, anticipate the turn and slow down way before the turn. Therefore, when you do get to the turn, you are barely moving. You want to be able to take your foot off the brake, turn the wheel, and coast slowly around the turn.
How to Regain Control in Ice
Even the most careful drivers experience skids while driving in ice. When you’re driving in the snow, it’s easy to lose traction and have your wheels spin or lock, especially when braking, accelerating, or cornering. When your front wheels lose traction, your car loses its steering ability. This sounds dangerous, but fortunately, front-wheel skids are easier to correct. However, drivers must be cautious not to hit an over-steering situation.
Tips to regain control in ice:
- Always look at your path of travel down the road.
- Steer in the direction you want to go.
- Never slam on the brakes. Hitting the brakes actually makes it harder to regain control.
- When your rear wheels stop skidding, steer in the opposite direction.
How to Make It Up A Hill in Ice
Driving up hills can be very tricky when the road is slippery from ice and snow. Even a small hill can be problematic. If you can find a different way to go, take that route. If you can’t avoid driving up a hill in ice, follow our tips below to make it up the hill safely.
Tips to make it up a hill safely on icy roads:
- Don’t power up hills. If you apply extra gas on ice-covered roads, your wheels will start spinning. Instead, you want to get inertia before reaching the hill.
- Give cars in front of you a lot of space. This prevents stopping half-way up the hill, which can result in your car being stuck.
- Don’t accelerate up the hill.
- Build speed before you get to the incline.
- Cruise up the hill without accelerating.
- When you reach the top of the hill, reduce your speed and drive as slow as possibly down the hill.
Roadside Assistance Near Me
If you don’t have to drive in the snow, it’s best to stay home. However, if you do have to approach the icy and snowy Georgia roads, approach it with a balance of caution and confidence. If you find yourself in a winter roadside emergency or stuck on the road, call Marietta Wrecker Service at (770) 765-1941. We will rapidly dispatch a towing professional to your location around the Marietta or metro-Atlanta area as quickly as possible to help solve your roadside emergency. Marietta Wrecker Service provides quick roadside assistance and our “on-call” fleet of tow trucks and service vehicles guarantee to deliver a prompt response. Our experienced staff will provide motorist towing services near you. Always be safe, use caution, be confident, and enjoy the winter season!