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Be safe on Selwyn roads this winter

Wednesday, May 31, 2023   Posted in: Signatory Notice Board By: Administrator With tags: transport, road safety, prevention, preparation

Selwyn District Council media release: 29th May 2023

Selwyn motorists are urged to plan ahead, stay alert, slow down and drop back as winter conditions begin settling in around the district.

Winter poses several challenges for drivers, including icy and wet weather, less daylight and sunstrike. There were 53 crashes on the district’s roads last winter, compared to 31 crashes in spring, Council Road Safety Advisor Mike Patterson says.

But there are things motorists can do to help stay safe...

  1. Check the weather forecast and driving conditions regularly.
    Consider if you need to travel, especially if conditions are poor. If you do, include extra time so you can drive more carefully. Plan ahead and make sure your vehicle is fit to handle the colder temperatures. Some of the easiest ways to make sure your vehicle is winter ready include getting it serviced, having a current Warrant of Fitness (WoF), and replacing tyres or windscreen wiper blades if needed.
  2. Slow down. Drop back.
    It takes a lot longer to stop your vehicle in wet conditions. The ‘two-second rule’ should be a ‘four-second or more’ rule when wet. In ice or snow, avoid braking suddenly, tap your brakes gently rather than one hard push.
  3. Stay alert to the risk of sunstrike and frost, increase your visibility by keeping the inside and outside of your windscreen clean and defrosted. Excess dust or grime on your windscreen can worsen sunstrike effects.
  4. Plan ahead with an emergency kit in your vehicle that has a warm blanket, long-life food, bottled water and a torch in case something adverse happens and emergency services can’t reach you quickly.

"Adjust your driving habits during winter to the environment around you and your ability within the conditions. While winter driving does add extra risk to your daily travel, if you plan ahead, stay alert, slow down and drop back you increase your chances of arriving safely," Mike says.

Ice scrapers and windscreen clothes will be available again this year at council service centres and some smaller rural service stations.

Get more information about driving safe this winter.