Winter driving advice

For latest news, flooding, power cuts, travel and weather: View national advice from the UK Government.

image of road with snow

Remember to adapt your driving techniques to the conditions:

Don't over-rev the engine or your wheels will spin.

Use as high a gear as possible to improve grip.

When climbing hills, build your speed up slowly.

On downward slopes, keep in a low gear to avoid excess braking.

Always brake gently and in plenty of time.

Don't block junctions or roundabouts.

Keep more distance than usual from the car in front.

Give cyclists more space.

Keep a look out for pedestrians particularly at crossings and schools.

Always ensure that all snow or ice is removed from your vehicle and don’t drive with only a small area of your windscreen cleared. This is not only dangerous – it’s against the law!

Check the weather forecast before you set out

Is your journey really necessary?

If it is an option, think about using public transport.

If you really do need to go by car, make sure you:

  • Listen to local radio or the BBC for weather updates – both broadcast local road reports and weather information
  • Let a friend or relative know that you will be travelling before you leave – preferably someone at your destination
  • Give yourself plenty of time: leave earlier and don't hurry – better late than not at all
  • Get your battery checked
  • Check that your tyres are suitable
  • Carry a shovel in the boot
  • Fully charge your mobile phone in case of emergency
  • Have enough fuel and oil. For a long journey maybe take a fuel can in case of emergency. Petrol stations can close in bad weather!
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