Following a severe snowy weather warning from the Met Office, with temperatures set to plunge to -3 degrees overnight, breakdown cover provider, Green Flag, is expecting up to a 39 per cent increase in breakdowns over the next few days.
This is predicted to equal over 110,000 breakdowns and 166,400 calls between Friday and Monday, with a snow and ice warning issued to regions from the Midlands upwards.
Lucy Davies at Green Flag, urged drivers to do all they can to stay safe over the weekend: “With forecasted severe weather conditions, we can expect possible delays on the roads, transport delays or cancellations, and road closures, meaning drivers heading out for festive events and Christmas shopping should take extra care in these challenging conditions. This could also impact commuters heading to work on Monday morning.
“It’s important for drivers to check their vehicles before leaving home, approach the roads with caution when driving, and ensure they leave a safe distance between other vehicles to decrease the risk of encountering a problem on the roads.”
In response to the adverse weather conditions, Green Flag has issued a set of common-sense tips to help motorists stay safe in cold weather conditions expected on the roads this week.
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Check your speed and use gentle driver inputs - even if the roads have been gritted they’re likely to be slippery.
Give more warning than usual to other drivers - when turning, stopping or changing lane.
Keep plenty of distance between cars - you never know when you'll hit an icy patch. If you pass the same landmarks as the car in front of you within three seconds, you’re following too closely.
Check whether your car has ABS anti-lock brakes. In the unlikely event that it doesn’t, pump the brake pedal slowly to prevent the wheels locking up and skidding.
Be extra-wary of black ice. It’s an invisible danger that can catch out even the most careful driver.
Approach corners at a steady speed, in as low a gear as possible. Don't touch the clutch unless it’s absolutely necessary, steer smoothly and avoid braking on bends.
Make sure all passengers are wearing seat belts.
Ensure you’re familiar with your car’s ventilation system to prevent windows from steaming up. Air conditioning will keep windows free from mist and condensation.