The forecast: A freeze is coming. Winter has descended upon us. Have you thought about how wintry conditions affect your driving?
Here are some ways to improve your driving and stay safe on the roads in all weather, especially in winter
General tips in all weather, especially in winter
- Switch your car's headlights on to make yourself more visible to other cars.
- Check your windscreen wipers are in good condition. They may have cracked from sun exposure or not being used.
- Slow down.
- Buckle up.
- Watch that following distance.
Take care against the glare
As the sun rises later and sets earlier in winter, you can find yourself driving into the glare. To combat this:
- Wear sunglasses, especially polarised ones.
- Raise your seat position so you are higher and can outstare the glare.
- Use your car's visor - an extendable one if your car has it.
- Make sure your car's windscreen is clean, both inside and outside. Think before switching on your windscreen washer because this may worsen your visibility.
- Clear the dashboard of clutter. Avoid using high-gloss vinyl cleaners on it.
Stay on these roads
On wet, icy roads, take extra care with how you drive:
- Check your car's tyres are in shape to avoid aquaplaning - they may have only half as much grip as on dry roads. Aquaplaning is when the tyres no longer channel water away and they skim across the water.
- Slow down before entering standing water on the road. It may cause your car to pull to the side. It also may be dangerously deeper than it looks.
Don't get blown away
It can be scary when a strong wind buffets your car and causes you to have to fight to keep the car straight on the road. Here are some things to keep in mind to battle strong winds:
- Stay alert and focus all your attention on the road and other cars that the wind may affect.
- Anticipate dangerous areas where strong winds may affect your driving and slow down.
- Be aware of the slipstreams of other cars, and gusts when overtaking trucks that have high sides.
- Keep both hands firmly on the steering wheel.
- Make only smooth, gentle changes in steering.
Better driving, more rewards
Remember, as you drive better you can increase your tally of DQ Points, improve your Vitalitydrive status, and earn more rewards.
Check these 3 things to make sure you get your rewards
- Install - Make sure you've got a DQ Track fitted to your car, or a smartphone-enabled DQ Track - and make sure it's working. The DQ Track sends us information about your driving, which enables you to get your rewards.
- Activate - Make sure you've linked your Vitalitydrive card - and your Gautrain Gold card - so we can keep track of your travel spend. You can easily link your card online.
- Swipe - When you fill up with fuel at BP or Shell, make sure you swipe your Vitalitydrive card.
8 good drivers filled up on fuel and a R10 000 tyre voucher!
Over eight weeks in April and May, a competition ran where Discovery Insure drivers could win a weekly tyre voucher of R10 000 for their good driving. Drivers had to maintain at least 600 DQ Points, and to swipe their Vitalitydrive card when filling up with at least R400 at BP. This entered their details into a weekly lucky draw. Eight good drivers can each now spend their vouchers on tyres to the value of R10 000!
The winners of the R10 000 tyre vouchers are:
- Archibald Nene
- Carlos Neves
- Rudy Van Den Berg
- Sharon Nair
- Philip Katz
- Anna Swanepoel
- Maryanne Stanford
- Adele Davis
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