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Fall and winter safety tips for drivers

The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer, while the temperature is dropping. For people who are going to take to the roads this fall and winter, staying safe is important. You still have to follow basic traffic safety laws. However, the weather adds another element of danger during these months.

Make sure that you always wear your seat belt and that children have appropriate safety seats. These can protect you in the event of a crash, so never think that they aren't important. On top of this, follow these safety tips:

  • Pack an emergency kit: This should include the basics that you will need if you break down or get into an accident. A flashlight, a shovel, an ice scraper, blankets, flares or warning devices, sand or kitty litter, and jumper cables are suitable for short trips. You should add water and food to the kit. Additionally, make sure that you have your phone and any necessary medications for all trips.
  • Give yourself time: Trying to rush when the roads are slick is a recipe for disaster. Instead of waiting until the last minute to head out the door, try to leave a little earlier. This allows you time to drive slowly while you pay close attention to what is going on around you.
  • Focus on the road: One thing that you must remember during the colder weather is that frost, ice and snow on the roads can lead to longer stopping times. Steering problems can also occur. There is a chance that you will skid when you stop. You should turn your car's steering wheel so that you move in the direction of the skid to help you regain control.
  • Plan for problems: Know what to do if you are ever stalled or stopped. If it is safe to do so, remain in your vehicle. This gives you an extra layer of protection between you and other vehicles in the area. Only start your car as needed to take the chill out of the air. Don't do anything that is going to run down the battery, such as shining the dome lights or playing the radio when the car isn't on. Additionally, make sure that you dig out the tailpipe so it isn't blocked by snow before you run the engine. A tailpipe that is covered in snow can cause deadly exhaust to back up into your vehicle.

If you are involved in a crash in Missouri, contact the police and get medical care if necessary. You might then decide to seek compensation for the damages.

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Kansas City, MO 64108

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