OCR Interpretation


Montana farmer-stockman. [volume] (Great Falls, Mont.) 1947-1993, November 01, 1962, Image 16

Image and text provided by Montana Historical Society; Helena, MT

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn86075096/1962-11-01/ed-1/seq-16/

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Tips for Safe
Winter Driving
NO MATTER WHAT kind of a car or
truck you drive, it can present prob
lems and irritations in winter.
Getting going and keeping going can
tax the patience of the most experi
enced driver. You've seen drivers futile
ly "grinding" away trying to start a
cold engine; motorists frantically spin
ning wheels until tires scream; cars
or trucks lurching on slick pavement
or being towed or pushed.
Here are a few common-sense rules
that can make winter driving easier
than most people think possible: Pump
the accelerator three or four times
before you try to start. This draws suf
ficient gas into the manifold for the
ignition to work on instantly.
Warm Up Engine
Wait until the motor is thoroughly
warmed up befere getting under way.
This will give the oil a chance to fully
lubricate the engine and prevent wear
and tear on moving parts once you
start. Moreover, the chances of stalling
w'ill be reduced and you will have a
better opportunity to maneuver on slip
pery pavements.
Starting in second gear or
on an automatic transmission will as
sure a speedier, smoother getaway if
you are parked on ice or snow. Less
power will reach the rear wheels, ac
celeration will be smoother and your
chances of spinning the rear wheels
will be reduced.
* 4
drive
» ■»
If the wheels spin pulling away from
a parking place or while driving on
slick pavement, take your foot off the
accelerator immediately. A heavy foot
on the gas pedal in winter driving is
an invitation to trouble or disaster.
Parking
When parking, try to avoid leaving
the rear wheels on ice or snow, espe
cially if you must park parallel. If you
start suddenly, the rear end might
slough around and jam the wheel
against the curb, thus compounding
your trouble. If you park diagonally,
it's wise not to pull all the way into
the stall. Allow a few inches between
the curb and front wheels so you can
pull forward if you have trouble back
ing out or need to rock the car to get
going.
There's a knack to getting the engine
started when you're being pushed.
Doing it properly can save time and
prevent damage to the gears.
It's simple if the car has a manual
shift. Push in the clutch, shift into
second or high, turn on the ignition
when your speed reaches five miles
an hour, then let out the clutch'. But it's
a little more complicated with an auto
matic transmission. Before your pusher
makes contact with your rear bumper,
put the shift lever into neutral. Keep
the ignition off. When the speed reaches
20 or 25 miles an hour switch on the
ignition, shift to low and apply gas
evenly and lightly.
Highway Driving
Highway driving in winter calls for
extra skill and alertness. Going down
hill presents special problems, as do ob
scured traffic signs or markers knocked
down by snowplows.
When you get to the crest of a hill,
shift into low. If you have a manual
shift, ease out slowly on the clutch.
Releasing it fast will act as a brake
and possibly send the vehicle into a
dangerous side skid. If this happens,
quickly shift into neutral and pump
the brakes before going back again into
low. Forget about the parking brake.
Using it to try to stop will lock the rear
wheels and send you into a spin.
Long hours of darkness and gloom
combine with snow and ice to increase
problems and irritations. Snow blowing
across the highway can obscure traffic
signs. When snow is blowing, drive at
reduced speed.
Road Signs
At night, some highway signs blend
with the snow cover, making them dif
ficult to see. Signs coated with a re
flective material glow in beams of
vehicle headlights, enabling a driver to
observe their message hundreds of feet
before he reaches the marker. Try to
use roads having signs that "light up"
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Blowing snow frequently obscures fa
miliar landmarks or traffic signs. Un
der these conditions it is wise to reduce
speed so you won't miss a sign that
could avoid trouble if you saw it in
time.
because they are guides to a safer and
easier journey.
Snow banked at intersections often
hides stop signs. It's a good idea to keep
an eye on the snowbanks on your right.
When you notice them growing smaller
you can bet there's an intersection
ahead because the plow blade was lifted
to avoid blocking the cross road.
Many traffic signs are knocked down
or severely damaged by snowplows. If
you see signs in this condition, report
them to police, county or state officials.
Your thoughtfulness might prevent an
other driver from having an accident.
Whether you're in town or on the
highway, skidding is probably the most
serious problem you will encounter in
winter driving. If you start to skid,
don't hit the brakes. You'll just skid
more. Turn the front wheels in the di
rection of the skid and step on the
accelerator lightly. As you pull out of
the skid and begin rolling forward
again pump your brakes to slow down
or stop.
Spinning Wheels
One of the worst irritations of winter
driving is getting stuck. All the horses
under the hood won't get you rolling
if you bear down on the accelerator
and try to "bull" your way out if your
wheels are spinning. The more they
spin the deeper they sink into loose
snow or the slicker icy pavement be
comes because of friction.
An easy solution to getting "unstuck
is to bleed air from the rear tires to
bring more tread into contact with the
slippery pavement. Cardboard, newspa
pers, an old rug, the trunk mat or sand
wedged under the rear wheels may
solve the problem.
Rocking the car or truck will build
up momentum when you're ready to
try again. Alternate shifting into oppo
site gears while applying gas lightly.
99

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