As Ireland’s only electronic parking and tolling tag provider, we’re advising Irish motorists to take precautions to advance safety on roads as the cold and more extreme weather conditions set in. Driving during the winter season can be more challenging for many drivers compared to other seasons with the roads getting busier and day light hours getting shorter. Here are our top ways for staying safe on the road this winter:
Keep a safe distance:
When driving always remember to keep the recommended distance between you and the vehicle in front. A minimum of two seconds in dry conditions and four seconds in wet.
Use your lights:
This is essential. Ensure that your car is lit up correctly, with dipped headlights on, and visible to all road users. Switch on fog lights when visibility is poor.
Carry out regular vehicle checks:
Inspect the condition of wiper blades, ensure all light bulbs are working and check oil, anti-freeze, water levels are sufficient. In addition, make sure that all tyres (including the spare tyre) have sufficient air and meet the legal minimum thread depth of 1.6mm.
Clean windscreen regularly:
Always ensure that any debris, ice, or condensation is gone from the windscreen, rear screen, side windows and mirrors before driving off.
Watch out for cyclists and pedestrians:
Ensure that you leave the recommended space for cyclists. This is 1 metre space in speed zones of up to 50km/h and 1.5 metres space in speed zones over 50km/h. Also be aware of pedestrians who may not be visible in darkness.
Be aware of tiredness:
Suffering from sleep deprivation can result in driving mistakes and an increased risk of being involved in an accident. Pull over, park in a safe place and take a 15-minute break if you feel fatigued while driving.
Tip for electric vehicle drivers:
Keep in mind that the colder weather can cause electric cars to consume energy much quicker. Pre-plan trips accordingly and ensure your route includes adequate charging stations for the distance you’ll be travelling.
Colin Delaney CEO of Easytrip says: “Good winter driving means having your car in optimum road worthy condition and taking care on the road. This means carrying out regular vehicle checks and being prepared for your journey. The clocks going back is the start of darker mornings and evenings and colder conditions setting in. It’s essential that motorists are extra vigilant this time of year. Be mindful of other road users, ensure you have breakdown cover and drive safe this winter.”
Easytrip offers car wash, breakdown assistance and puntcture protection services and provides a parking service with the use of the Easytrip tag at various locations nationwide including Belfast, Cork, Dublin, Galway, Kilkenny, Limerick and Waterford. It can be accessed with the Easytrip App. With the Easytrip tag, drivers can also pay for their tolls and save €1 on the M50 toll fees. For more details visit www.easytrip.ie or call 1890 67 67 68.