Just as we take extra care shipping your car in winter weather, the safety and comfort of our truck drivers is also top priority. Living and working in the Chicago area, Montway dispatchers and staff have had their fair share of experience driving in the snow–but not in a semi! Hauling cars from state to state every day, carefully loading and unloading every auto, Montway’s qualified and experienced staff of truckers know the best tricks for dealing with severe weather across all the roads and highways of the continental U.S. That’s why we wanted to share with you some trucker tips, which can help any motorist stay safe on the road, anywhere in the country.

Winter is beautiful season, but it can be harsh to the drivers. Photo: pixabay.com
Winter is beautiful season, but it can be harsh for the drivers.

Start Slow

Take time to get the feel of the road each day.  Ease into the throttle to determine traction, and brake and turn gently. Use your headlights, even during the daytime.

Ice On Your Windows – Ice On The Road

Ice forms more quickly and stays longer on bridges, overpasses, and even shaded spots on the road after the rest of the road is clear. Exit ramps are not traveled as frequently and can freeze rapidly.  You can also check by watching the vehicle ahead; if there’s no tire spray, there’s probably ice on the road.

Brakes Are The Great Equalizer

It doesn’t matter if you’re in a small car or a big rig, no vehicle can stop or steer better on ice. Remember, the larger the vehicle, the longer the stopping distance.

No Cruising

Do not use cruise control. If your car hydroplanes or skids, the car can accelerate and spin the wheels as it attempts to maintain the constant speed.

Be extra careful with pedestrians. Photo: pixabay.com
Be extra careful with pedestrians.

The Cat’s Meow

Truckers use tire chains to provide traction on the ice. In a pinch, kitty litter has a similar effect. Keeping a bag in your car can deliver you from literally spinning your wheels if you get stuck.

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Winterize Your Car

Did you know truck diesel gels when it gets really cold? Temperatures alter the way all vehicles function. The easiest way to avoid being stranded with a car that won’t start is by testing your battery before the deep freeze. Keep your gas tank as full as possible, to help prevent condensation (water) in the tank and a fuel line freeze. Replace your windshield fluid with one rated to the lowest temperature you can find and ensure the wipers won’t streak by checking that they are not cracked or broken. It doesn’t hurt to carry an extra gallon of antifreeze. Just winterize your car! Or contact us and we can help you with our door-to-door car shipping service.

Prepare For The Worst

In the event that you end up stuck, every cross-country transport driver knows a little forethought can keep you not only safe and warm, but more comfortable until you get moving. Must-haves include a first-aid kit, blanket, water, non-perishable food,  vital  medications, flashlight, batteries, sealed or water-proof matches (some lighters won’t work in cold), jumper cables, ice scraper and brush, and shovel.

Extra socks and gloves not only keep you warm, they can save you from frostbite if you get wet. To increase comfort, also consider loading up on some of these trucker staples: disposable finger and toe warmers, sleeping bag, tarp, flares, glow sticks, multipurpose tool or kit, hand crank radio, toilet paper, and extra boots or lined slippers.

Check For Road Conditions 

Current road and weather conditions for the nation are available online on AccuTraffic. Check your state’s Department of Transportation Web site for local roadway incident information. Find national traffic and road closure information on the U.S. Department of transportation Web site.

“No load is so hot it needs to cool off in a ditch!”

If you take away just one piece of advice from our truck drivers, this is it. The number one strategy for winter driving is always caution. Most importantly, allow extra time to reach your destination. If there are four-wheelers spun out, the roads are bad. If you start seeing trucks and other transport vehicles pulled over, it’s absolutely time to get off the roadway.

Stay warm and safe on all your travels!

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