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If you drive regularly in steep country, or if you’re
planning to visit there, here are some tips that can make
your trips safer and more enjoyable.
Keep your vehicle in good shape. Check all fluid
levels and also the brakes, tires, cooling system
and transaxle. These parts can work hard on
Know how to go down hills. The most important
thing to know is this: let your engine do some of the
slowing down. Shift to a lower gear when you go
down a steep or long hill.
If you don’t shift down, your brakes could get so
hot that they wouldn’t work well. You would then
have poor braking or even none going down a
hill. You could crash. Shift down to let your
engine assist your brakes on a steep
Coasting downhill in NEUTRAL (N) or with the
ignition off is dangerous. Your brakes will have to
do all the work of slowing down. They could get
so hot that they wouldn’t work well. You would
then have poor braking or even none going down
a hill. You could crash. Always have your engine
running and your vehicle in gear when you
Know how to go uphill. Drive in the highest
Stay in your own lane when driving on two-lane
roads in hills or mountains. Don’t swing wide or cut
across the center of the road. Drive at speeds that let
you stay in your own lane.
As you go over the top of a hill, be alert. There could be
something in your lane, like a stalled car or an accident.
You may see highway signs on mountains that warn of
special problems. Examples are long grades, passing or
-passing zones, a falling rocks area or winding
roads. Be alert to these and take appropriate action.