When driving in wintry conditions, motorists should take extra care and ensure they keep their vehicle well maintained.
If the roads are snowy or icy, then the first thing you need to consider is whether your journey really is necessary. And if it isn't essential, then don't go - simple as that.
If you are taking to the roads when ice and snow are likely, then begin by ensuring your car is up to the job and check:
An ice scraper and de-icer should be carried for day-to-day use, whilst other items might include a torch, warm clothes or a blanket, boots, first aid kit, shovel, battery, jump lead, tow rope. Food and a warm drink should be considered on longer journeys.
Clear your windows and your car
Many road users have been concerned by rumours that they could be fined for driving with snow on their roofs. There is no specific legislation on driving with snow on the roof of a vehicle. However if it slips over the windscreen, or flies into the path of another car, it could leave the driver open to being penalised for driving without due care and attention or careless or inconsiderate driving. Any snow left on vehicle bodywork, such as the bonnet or roof, could slide onto lights or windows causing dangerous obstruction to vision of the driver or signals to other road users. Snow could also slide from a moving vehicle and onto a footpath or roadway possibly causing danger or injury to other road users or pedestrians.
Better late than never
Once under way, remember the golden rule of safe driving: it doesn't matter if you are late! On treacherous roads, it is literally a case of better late than never.
Always drive with extreme care even if roads have been gritted - you never know what lies round the next corner. The same applies to the distance you drive behind another vehicle - drive as if you were on an untreated road, and leave a generous space.