Saturday night's blizzard reminded us all that this is still Iowa. Weather is a constant presence in all of our lives, especially during the storm seasons of the Spring and Winter seasons. The difference, of course, is that Winter weather also brings winter driving conditions.
There's no denying that the hazards of driving on snow and ice have been reduced by such automotive technologies as anti lock brakes and all wheel drive, but those can never take the place of good old common sense.
Making sure equipment is in good operating order is the first step. Make sure your tires, wipers, lights, and brakes are all checked next time you go in for service, or better yet, make an appointment with your auto care provider to do just that.
Second, make sure you have the right safety items in your car for winter driving and that you know how to use them. These include: ice scraper/snow brush, flashlight, flares or reflective triangle, distress sign, first aid kit, basic tools, a fully charged cell phone, candy, emergency tire sealant, jumper cables, sand or carpet strips for traction, jumper cables, blankets or sleeping bag, and an emergency food supply (candy bars work well for this).
Finally, wear your seatbelt, and drive at a safe speed for conditions, not only for yourself, but for other people on the road. You're just as responsible for an accident if you can't stop as you would be if you didn't stop.
Winter driving is part of living in Iowa. Let's all do our part to let everyone keep on living this winter by being smart and safe on the roads.