- 15 January 2019
Pedestrians and cyclists often struggle to stay visible during winter.Let’s see how cars, bicycles and pedestrians can share the road, even in the midst of a snowstorm.
Winter Driving Requires a Lot of VigilanceIn winter, when pedestrians and cyclists are difficult to see, it is essential to adapt your driving to the weather. Actually, Tecnic rarely cancels driving lessons because of bad weather to better prepare students for winter driving!
You can’t control the weather, but, luckily, you can follow these precautions to make your driving safer:
- Up and Running: Tire maintenance, defrosting, clear windows… Take the wheel with nothing but a well-maintained vehicle that can handle ice and snow.
- Skid 101: Do you know what to do if you lose control of your vehicle? Unique in Quebec, the skid courses offered by Tecnic teach this manoeuvre.
- Go Easy: During winter, drivers need more time to react to obstacles because of the poor weather and the state of the roads.
- No Place Like Home: Avoid driving when the weather makes it too difficult, such as during an ice storm or a snowstorm. Always think ahead when planning your trips.
Pedestrians, Stay Visible During WinterBeware: Deadly accidents are more common in winter than summer. Not only are pedestrians and motorists less in control of their surroundings, but reckless actions, such as crossing the street other than at designated locations, can easily have serious consequences due to low visibility.
Be more vigilant by following these tips:
- In Single File: If you have to walk in the street because the sidewalks are not cleared of snow or defrosted, do it in single file, facing the traffic.
- Into Each Other’s Eyes: Do not just assume that car drivers have noticed you. Make eye contact with them as often as possible.
- Stand Out: A pedestrian wearing white will obviously blend in with the snowy landscape. To remain visible in winter, pedestrians should wear coloured clothing or reflective tape.
- Let There Be Light: Avoid dark roads, especially at night, and put as much distance between the road and you as possible.
Cyclists Rolling All Year Round!Cyclists who defy cold winters deserve our admiration, but they need to make sure that their bicycle is always as visible as possible.
For those daring cyclists out there, follow these recommendations:
- Hand signals: a responsible cyclist always applies good turning techniques. It can prevent accidents, especially when visibility is limited.
- Ring-a-ling: Did you know that it is highly recommended for your bike to have a bell or a horn? This will help you announce your presence.
- Bright Clothing: Cyclists are more visible in winter with light clothing, reflective stripes and/or an orange safety vest. Increase your chances of being seen with a bright-coloured helmet.
- In the Spotlight: In addition to a white light at the front and a red light at the rear, your bike must have a reflector on the spokes or a reflective strip on the sides of each wheel. To be even safer, add a light to your helmet!
- Raise the Flag: In addition to helping cyclists stay more visible in the winter, a club flag on the side or front of the bike encourages drivers to keep their distance.
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