To skid or not to skid?

snowman-by-mg-sheltonNow the snow really is arriving, Purdy’s feeling nervous about her lack of experience in driving in snow and icy conditions.  She is only getting in her car if she really has too.

She has re-read her dad’s advice and recapped on the tips she got on what to do if you get stuck, and getting up and down hills.  However having looked out of her window, her ungritted cul-de-sac looks like an ice-rink and with a sharp bend to get onto the main road she realises she missed out what to do if you skid?

 So back onto the internet to do some research……

 Need to get the car out of the snow first, too much advice to list but a few pertinent points Purdy is going to remember….

  1. Clear snow off the roof as well as the windows otherwise it could fall across the windscreen once you start driving and could be a hazard to other drivers
  2. Scrape the entire windscreen, rear windscreen and windows
  3. Clear the snow from around the wheels, (she’ll put some of the salt from Bob’s emergency kit around the wheels too)
  4. Drive in comfortable dry shoes to avoid slipping on the pedals, not the snow clogged shoes you have just worn to clear the car
  5. Once inside move the wheels from side to side to further clear the snow
  6. Turn the blowers and rear window heater on full blast (directed at the windscreen of course!)
  7. Check whether the windscreen wipers are frozen to the windscreen (Don’t turn them on if they are!)
  8. Once you can see clearly out front, back and sides, pull away in second easing gently off the clutch.

 Ok so once you are on the go, the secret is to avoid skidding by driving slowly, and not braking, accelerating or steering sharply – all good so far…..

But if you do skid – that’s when it gets tricky – what does the advice say. Well Purdy scours the net, there is so much advice….so what comes up the most – steer into the skid – what does that mean?  How you respond depends on whether you have front or rear wheel drive?  How would she know that?

Purdy’s confused ……what she wants is some advice in plain English that she can understand – so she finds it on an American site!!! A website for new drivers. It seems to encompass what most other sites say but in terminology Purdy can get her head around!

In summary this is what it says….when you start to skid…

  •  Get your foot off the accelerator and brake
  • Look where you want to actually go and steer gently in that direction
  • As you feel yourself regaining control of the car, gently apply the brakes or acceleration depending on the type of skid  (So, if your front wheels are skidding, you’ll want to brake gently. If your rear wheels are skidding, you’ll want to gently accelerate)

You might find some better advice elsewhere but if you want to read more from the site Purdy found the most useful,  the link’s  here  

Purdy is hoping if she ever does skid that she can keep her cool long enough to put this advice into practice…..

Credit for snowman photo:  MG Shelton on

So, what do you think?