CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Blog

Insights and tips on how to protect your adventure sports business, giving you and your guests peace of mind.

Ward, Hayden
/ Categories: BLOG Articles

Mastering Winter Road Conditions to Keep Your Business Safe

Winter Driving for Businesses

Winter weather can be a force of nature that often requires extra precautions to ensure safety on the road. All drivers, whether taking the company vehicle out or simply commuting, should be prepared for anything Mother Nature throws their way. Driving in hazardous winter conditions requires special safety measures to stay safe. Observe these safety tips with your team members when driving turns difficult.

Winter Weather Precautions

Each changing season is accompanied by driving hazards. Drivers unaccustomed to particular weather patterns may need additional training. For example, a driver unfamiliar with cooler climates  may lack experience or knowledge  of safely driving on ice. Training your employees on seasonal driving safety can help you reduce auto claims.

The Danger of Skids

One of the most dangerous winter driving hazards is to skid. If it happens at a high speed, the result can be deadly. But most skids can be avoided by simply adjusting to driving conditions and knowing  how to recover from a skid.

Skids are most likely to occur on curves and turns, so slow down ahead of time to prepare for them. Then, when in the curve, accelerate slowly and steer steadily with no abrupt change in direction and, especially, no abrupt braking. Driving smoothly in general can help prevent skids.

Skid Safety Techniques

If you go into a skid, remember two critical rules:

  • Don't steer against the skid.
  • Avoid using the brakes.

Instead, immediately take your foot off the accelerator and steer in the direction the vehicle is sliding until you feel recovery of traction, then slowly straighten the wheels until you recover complete control. If the back of your vehicle is fishtailing to the right, turn the wheel gently in that direction until your car recovers.

If braking is necessary before traction is recovered, apply the brake pedal cautiously so you do not lock the wheels and intensify the skid. You will also have better brake control in a skid situation if your vehicle is equipped with anti-lock brakes.

You should constantly be on the lookout for areas that might induce skidding, such as unexpected ice patches or piles of wet leaves, which tend to be found in shady areas or on overpasses. Keep in mind that wet ice, warmed by the sun, is twice as dangerous as completely frozen ice. Be especially alert whenever there is any kind of precipitation during cold weather.

General Winter Driving Tips for Business Owners

Since accidents are common in winter, your team must be extra cautious while driving especially if eager adventures are also a part of the mix. Because  winter driving is risky, it’s also a good idea to have your drivers practice driving in slippery conditions, so they’re well-prepared and comfortable.

  • Drive with extreme caution and at slow speeds. You will need 3 to 12 times the amount of stopping distance than you need without precipitation.
  • Increase the distance behind the vehicle ahead.
  • If possible, avoid bridges and overpasses since they freeze first.
  • Do not brake quickly as you may spin out of control.
  • If you should get stuck, straighten your wheels and accelerate at a slow pace.

A safe stop on icy or snow-packed roads is a tricky maneuver that requires skill and good judgment. Always plan ahead of time for lane changes; check your rearview mirror, your blind spots and signal your intentions to traffic behind you. Make the move with the smallest possible steering change and with a light foot on the gas. When you drive into deep snow, stepping on the gas may cause the wheels to spin, with little if any forward movement.

Ensure Your Team’s Safety When It Comes to Vehicles

If your team is driving a company car, truck or van, ensure the vehicle is properly equipped before someone takes it out. The brakes should be functioning correctly, and the tires should be properly inflated with a good tread surface. Sometimes snow tires, and even chains, may be best to help keep the vehicle under control during dangerous winter conditions.

Chill Out With CBIZ Adventure Sports Insurance

Winter weather can be unpredictable and unsafe when driving. Protect yourself and those around you on the roads by taking extra safety precautions this season. From giving yourself extra time to reach your destination to brushing up on winter weather driving tips, be sure to stay safe and alert while behind the wheel.

Our team at CBIZ Adventure Sports can help you to mitigate the risk associated with business vehicle ownership and driver safety. We offer commercial auto coverage that is designed to fit your needs and help you protect your business and the vehicle or fleet of vehicles you use to run your business efficiently. For additional safety guidance and insurance solutions for your business,  request a free CBIZ Adventure Sport Insurance quote  today.

This blog may contain scenarios that are provided as examples only. Coverage is subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions of the policy issued. The information provided is general in nature and may be affected by changes in law or the interpretation of such laws. The reader is advised to contact a professional prior to taking any action based upon this information.

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CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Insurance, a division of CBIZ Insurance Services, Inc., is the largest insurer of adventure sports businesses in the United States. As part of an $850 million New York Stock Exchange traded company (CBZ), we developed a policy coverage to meet the needs for those in the recreation and outfitting industries. Our policy is underwritten by an A.M. Best Rated A++ (Superior) company.