Snow - How To Drive In It

Topic 29637 | Page 1

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Errol V.'s Comment
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In it's own topic here. The things I've thought out to help me drive a car or a semi in the coldest, snowiest days of the year.

Driving in snow should be one of the times you are most alert. The lack of traction on a snowy road means that you may want to drive straight, but your truck and/or trailer might get a different idea. Your job is to pay attention to the slightest change in your direction.

Some things to keep your eye peeled for:

No lane lines. White lane lines plus white snow turn the roadway into a blank sheet of white paper. There is no real indicator about where to go besides the signposts on the side, and maybe the road divider.

More space between you want the driver ahead. You know about stopping distance. Try doubling or even tripling it.

Start moving in a higher gear. You don't get much traction in snow. Use a higher gear to start moving from standing. You can manually shift an Automatic transmission to a higher gear. A higher gear sends less power to the wheels, reducing the chance of breaking traction. This is an arm wrestle match you don't want to win.

Your steers work better was a rudder. With no traction. Steering is more like how a boat steers with rudder. Turn the wheel, but expect to wait for the change of direction.

This will keep you alert: Imagine the accident about to happen with you in it. What if the car ahead of you slides out of control? Be ready for anything to happen.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

IDMtnGal 's Comment
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Last night I was in that situation just west of Spokane WA. The road was covered, the plows hadn't been through, so I slowed down to 40 mph and then put my right side tires on the rumble strip. I was all by myself with no traffic near me and was doing pretty good til I saw this truck coming really fast. He got beside me about 6 inches away and then his trailer came toward me. I hollered at him on the CB but got no response. The next off ramp I pulled off and got on the on-ramp and parked it for the night. It just wasn't worth it to be in a wreck.

Laura

Errol V.'s Comment
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IDMtnGal, of you mean on I-90, I was W/bound stuck in the snow for a few hours in that pass (Ryegrass?) .

As for the speed, others may feel it's ok, but witness the recent I-35 mess in Ft. Worth. Most of those people seeming to speed head on to disaster thought nothing of going fast until they realized there was a big crash ahead.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
midnight fox's Comment
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A higher gear sends less power to the wheels, reducing the chance of breaking traction.

Should it be kept in a higher gear than normal for the whole drive then, or only when starting? How do grades fit in?

Errol V.'s Comment
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double-quotes-start.png

A higher gear sends less power to the wheels, reducing the chance of breaking traction.

double-quotes-end.png

Should it be kept in a higher gear than normal for the whole drive then, or only when starting? How do grades fit in?

The higher gear is for starting from "zero".

For short downhill grades search here for " sleigh ride". Generally, try you're best to not use the brakes to slow down.

For longer grades keep your speed as low as possible. Always, don't try to win that arm wrestle traction match with the snow. I'll be a bundle of nerves myself half way down a long snowy grade. If possible, wait at the top for a snowplow to start down.

IDMtnGal 's Comment
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IDMtnGal, of you mean on I-90, I was W/bound stuck in the snow for a few hours in that pass (Ryegrass?) .

As for the speed, others may feel it's ok, but witness the recent I-35 mess in Ft. Worth. Most of those people seeming to speed head on to disaster thought nothing of going fast until they realized there was a big crash ahead.

Yes....I pulled off on the Tyler ramp. Only one lane clean when I took off at 1030 thismorning. Now I'm in the Indian John Rest Area debating on chaining up here (mm 86) or going to the chain up area at mm71. Don't really want to do this at all.

Laura

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Scott L.'s Comment
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I drove in snow for 3 hours today in MO. You just have to reduce speed, and if it gets too bad just shut it down. No load is worth ending your career over a crash. Be safe everybody!

Andrey's Comment
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I think everybody agrees, there is one simple way of driving on snow: go slow. If very slow, turn on flashers. If you need to go slower than that, maybe it is better to shut down.

Anne A. (momcat)'s Comment
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I think everybody agrees, there is one simple way of driving on snow: go slow. If very slow, turn on flashers. If you need to go slower than that, maybe it is better to shut down.

Wish you would've told my other half that a few hours ago . . . .

Then again, wasn't bad...'til he left out. Hasn't quit snowing since. Gonna beg him to stay put....'til tmrw. He doesn't listen well, tho.

Be safe, y'all. Any prayer types; think of my Tom here in Ohio, heading into Toledo. TY.

~ Anne ~

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

IDMtnGal 's Comment
member avatar

Now I'm in the Indian John Rest Area debating on chaining up here (mm 86) or going to the chain up area at mm71. Don't really want to do this at all.

Laura

It took about 1.5 hrs to chain up 3 tires. Had to redo 2 of them. It's been 4 years since I've chained up and vowed I wouldn't ever do it again. Think I'm going to ask for chain-up pay! smile.gif

After I got done, I checked WSDOT Road Report and found this:

0149717001613446242.jpg

So, I am parked for the night and NOT taking roads I don't know (US 12 White Pass) and staying off US 2 Stevens Pass, in the winter. Besides, I got soaked by the snow and need to warm up.

Laura

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

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