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» Keep a smooth, progressive and light touch on the brakes for normal braking. Even in a car equipped with ABS (Anti Lock Braking System). In the event of an emergency in an ABS-equipped car, press the pedal HARD and hold it down. Remember that in an ABS-equipped car, you can also steer around many obstacles while braking. Perhaps a better description of ABS would be: “Allows you to Brake and Steer.”

» Keep both hands on the wheel at 9 o’clock and 3 o’clock positions, and steer smoothly in the direction that you want to go. Avoid the “hand over hand technique.” Instead, utilize the shuffle technique and keep the right hand on the right side of the wheel and the left hand on the left side of the wheel. While this technique may sound overly simple, it can help you avoid skids.

» Be careful when using downshifting as a way to slow the vehicle. Even though manual transmissions may provide greater control to assist with braking, gear changes should always be made smoothly in the straightaway before the corner. Abrupt gear changes, especially while cornering, may upset a vehicle’s balance and cause a skid to occur.

» Don’t overestimate the capability of four wheel drive vehicles. Many drivers mistakenly believe that four wheel drive is all-powerful. Every type of vehicle depends on four small contact patches where the tire meets the road for traction. These small areas are the only contact of your vehicle to the road. Four wheel drive does not improve braking or cornering effectiveness.

» Anti-lock brakes can’t perform miracles. Don’t be misled by ABS braking systems. Braking efficiency is limited by the grip available, and the type of tires with which your car is equipped. If you carry too much speed into a corner and then try to brake, even ABS won’t keep you on the road. Never count on technology to replace good judgment.

» Wear quality sunglasses. Good quality sunglasses help highlight changes in the terrain and road surface even in low visibility conditions.

» The world’s best drivers are trained to anticipate problems early and direct the vehicle appropriately before they become involved in a problem. Reacting too quickly can be dangerous if the driver’s response is inappropriate.

» When driving up a steep hill in icy conditions, gain speed and momentum on the flat before starting uphill. When the car begins to slow part way up the hill ease up on the accelerator, allow the car to slow down and crest the hill slowly. If you try and accelerate too hard and spin the wheels, you may lose momentum and not make it to the top. It’s better to make the top at a slower speed than to not make it at all.

» If you do have trouble, AND BECOME STOPPED OR STRANDED run the engine only briefly — not continuously — to run the heater. Regularly make sure that the exhaust pipe is clear of snowdrifts or other obstructions. Carbon monoxide can accumulate more easily in a non-moving vehicle.

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