Consider these 10 helpful driving tips to avoid dashing through the snow during your winter travels. 

 1. For tires to grip as they’re designed to, don’t over- or under-inflate them.

 2. If your vehicle is rear-wheel drive, put heavy items in the back for better traction.

 3. When driving long distances, frequently monitor your vehicle’s fluid levels, such as oil, windshield-washer fluid, radiator fluid, and power-steering fluid. Fluctuations in these levels are typically signs of damage in vehicle components that need immediate attention.

 4. When driving over a bridge, avoid sudden braking, accelerating, or lane changing. The colder air beneath bridges can cause greater ice buildup and thus a slicker surface.

 5. If you must stop on a slippery road, brake lightly at a constant rate rather than stopping hard and fast; otherwise you could lose control of the vehicle.

 6. To regain control of a spinning vehicle, (a) release the gas but do not brake suddenly and (b) turn the steering wheel in the direction of the spin to regain control.

7. To drive up a slick hill, gain a reasonable, safe speed on the flat surface before the incline and use the momentum to climb the hill.

 8. Keep blankets and extra food and water handy in case you have mechanical problems when auto shops are closed and you have to spend the night in your vehicle. 

 9. Avoid traveling at night if at all possible.  

 10. Always use common sense and plan for dangerous situations.

 For additional ideas on driving safely in winter weather: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

—Stetson Robinson