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Driving on Snow or Ice
Most of the time, those places where your tires meet the
road probably have good traction.
However, if there is snow or ice between your tires and
the road, you can have a very slippery situation. You’ll
have a lot less traction or “grip” and will need to be
What’s the worst time for this? “Wet ice.” Very cold
snow or ice can be slick and hard to drive on. But wet
ice can be even more trouble because it may offer the
least traction of all. You can get wet ice when it’s about
freezing (32 F; 0 C) and freezing rain begins to fall.
Try to avoid driving on wet ice until salt and sand crews
can get there.
Whatever the condition
-- smooth ice, packed, blowing
or loose snow
-- drive with caution.
If you have traction control, keep the system on. It will
improve your ability to accelerate when driving on a
slippery road. Even though your vehicle has a traction
control system, you’ll want to slow down and adjust
your driving to the road conditions. See “Traction
Control System” in the Index.
If you don’t have the traction control system, accelerate
gently. Try not to break the fragile traction. If you
accelerate too fast, the drive wheels will spin and polish
the surface under the tires even more.