Seasonal message on a different note

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They’ve seen it all, so any motorist looking for advice about not going off the road or being involved in a collision would do well to listen to a tow truck driver.

Not surprisingly, as Rusty Campbell of Tri-County Towing says in a story in today’s paper, just using common sense could help people avoid a lot of misery. But as always at this time of year a couple of helpful reminders might also go a long way.

Some simply drive too fast for conditions and without due caution, say both Campbell and Billy Mahar of Mahar’s Towing.

True enough, winter driving requires a good dose of psychological preparation. Whatever time it takes to get to town, to work, or wherever takes longer. Taking that in stride and always allowing more time for the trip will help in slowing down and driving as conditions dictate.

Another big factor Campbell notes of vehicles that have slid off the road is worn rubber or use of all-season tires, which aren’t adequate for the kind of winters drivers face in this part of the world.

Increasing publicity has been directed in recent years on the varying kinds of tires, the different grades of rubber, and how the more supple winter tires allow better contact in wet, cold and slippery conditions than the harder rubber of all-seasons. Some jurisdictions with harsh conditions even have laws making them mandatory.

The term all-season is unfortunate, because it’s somewhat misleading. But the point is being driven home each winter – by automotive experts and by police – that if they were indeed designed for four seasons it certainly isn’t for typical eastern Canadian winters.

Those who avoid making the switch probably do so thinking they are economizing, but it’s pretty false economy if it contributes to even one mishap.

The Government of Nova Scotia has several websites listing tips for driving in winter and being prepared for emergencies. It’s well worth a review by any motorist as we head into this season.

Organizations: Government of Nova Scotia

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