Be prepared for seasonal driving changes

Changed sunrise and sunset times, chilly weather and wet weather in certain regions require changes to driving behaviour throughout winter.

In the last few weeks, drivers have faced the challenges that come with the change of season to winter.

Changed sunrise and sunset times, chilly weather and wet weather in certain regions require changes to driving behaviour throughout winter.

The CEO of MasterDrive, Eugene Herbert says a few changes to how you drive can help you overcome these challenges safely during the winter months. This is how to cope better in these scenarios:

Changing sunrise and sunset

  • As dawn breaks later and dusk sets sooner, you can expect to drive more in changing light or even darkness. If you do not already automatically switch your headlights on as soon as you get in the car, take care to do so now.
  • To avoid glare shining into your eyes, change your usual routine and routes. Leave earlier in the mornings or take alternative routes where the glare is not as bad.
  • Drive with polarised sunglasses to help with the glare and protect your eyes from damage.
  • Keep your windscreen clean as dirt shows up more when the glare shines on it.
  • Reduce the glare by raising your seat position, if your vehicle allows it, so you are higher up.
  • Lower your visor before you leave so you are not blinded suddenly as you round a corner.
  • Do not use high-gloss vinyl cleaners on your dashboard as it can reflect.

Chilly weather

  • On misty mornings, remember to not switch your lights on bright as the beams will reflect off the mist. Rather use low beams or fog lights.
  • Ensure your anti-freeze has been topped up.
  • Make sure that all the maintenance on your car is up-to-date as the cooler temperatures magnify existing problems.
  • This includes ensuring your car has been serviced, windscreen wipers are in good condition and tyre maintenance is undertaken.

Wet winter driving

  • Follow the usual tips advised when driving in wet weather including adjusting the following distance and speed, switching lights on and avoiding driving through puddles of water.
  • Drivers should also be prepared for frost. This will make the roads more slippery and require larger following distances, gentler braking and more caution when going around corners or other hazards.
  • Certain areas may also experience ice on the roads. Drive carefully through areas likely to be affected by ice, like under bridges. Make a point to learn what to do if you start to lose control on ice as well.