At the heart of North Yorkshire lies our historic city of York. Steeped in heritage and tradition, the city is a magnet for tourists and academics who come to marvel at the Minster, the Shambles and other attractions. For those of us who live here, we know that winters in North Yorkshire are cold and harsh, and we can expect snow, sleet, rain and wind to batter us as we drive around getting through our days. Surrounding the city are roads to some of the country’s most beautiful and sought-after scenic spots, like the Yorkshire Dales, North York Moors and North Yorkshire coastline. Day trippers ought to be careful that they take the proper precautions to ensure safe driving this winter.
Fortunately, we’ve prepared a handy guide.
Step 1: – Prepare an emergency winter car kit — your car should have a little cache of supplies on hand just in case you do run into difficulties during your journey. A basic emergency kit would include a first-aid kit, as well as a torch, extra mobile charger, a windscreen ice scraper, soft-bristled brush for the snow, a small shovel in case you’re stuck in a drift, and extra blankets/winter clothing. It’ll help you be ready for anything.
Step 2: – Clean your car more regularly — your car’s undercarriage takes extra punishment during the winter months, so clean the undercarriage, as well as the wheels and lower body of the vehicle. This is especially necessary when they are salting the roads during/after snowfall. Road salt can get stuck and embedded across your car and cause corrosion if not seen to. A good rinse and more regular visits to the car wash will help.
Step 3: – Check fluid levels — you’ll be using your windscreen washer a lot more in winter as those vans and trucks in front of you are throwing up all kinds of dirt to your windscreen. Furthermore, the cold weather does a real number on your car’s battery, so check the fluid levels are sufficient, and that there’s no sign of corrosion or other damage to the casing.
Step 4: – Give yourself extra time — slushy wet roads are more dangerous to drive on, not to mention icy and slick ones. You will need to slow down and that will add to your journey time. Account for the weather when judging times to your destination, and don’t put yourself in a position where you need to be hurrying. Haste makes waste most of the year, but on winter roads in Yorkshire, haste makes serious collisions.
Step 5: – Consider a service before winter — right before winter is the perfect time to drop the car in at the garage for a quick once over. Check your brakes, suspension, transmission and other key systems are in full working order, because they’ll have to be when you’re facing winter driving. Harder conditions mean the car needs to be in top order. Try to time a check up or even full service right before the winter properly sets in.
We hope that drivers in and around York will stay safe this winter. Follow our tips and you won’t go far wrong.