Grimes & Fertitta, P.C.

3 winter driving tips for unusual snow falls in Houston

Slick roads are coming with the winter months, and even Texas can be met with some challenges. When weather takes a turn for the worst, whether it's through thunderstorms or sleet, drivers need to know what to do to stay safe.

Snow happens in Houston more often than you might think. Between 2017 and 2018, it snowed three times. Drivers who aren't familiar with snowy weather may not be sure how to drive in it, which makes it more likely for them to get into crashes. Here are three tips on being a better driver in less-than-ideal driving conditions.

1. Don't drive if you don't trust yourself

To start with, if you don't trust in your ability to drive in unusual weather conditions, don't do it. You can call a ride-sharing service, taxi or get a ride with someone who is more familiar with snow, sleet or slick roads. It's common not to understand how to drive in winter conditions, especially when an area usually has warm winters. The best way to get through it is to be safe and avoid driving.

2. Take a winter-driving course

Before winter, it's a good idea to take a winter driving course. These courses explain important things like how to drive out of a slide or how to brake if the roads are icy. With this knowledge, it's easier to avoid getting into a crash.

3. Be aware of other drivers

Finally, the best thing you can do is to watch out for other drivers. Even if you're confident in your abilities, it's not just you whom you have to worry about on the roads. Give other drivers plenty of space to slow down, and reduce your speed significantly if the roads are slick.

If the snow is bad enough that you may have to pull over, use your hazard lights and warn other drivers. They may panic seeing the snow and not pay much attention. However, your thoughtful use of hazards can catch their attention (and make you easier to see in the snow).

These are just three winter weather tips that you can follow if snow hits Houston. It's more common than you might think, so preparing for a drive with unusual weather conditions is a good idea. Keep a first-aid kit and emergency kit in tow, too, so you have water, food and blankets since it's always best to be prepared for the worst, while hoping to avoid it.

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