Road Safety - Winter drivingby Martha Scully • December 03, 2014
Transport Canada's number one tip is to Prevent problems before they occur! If you are a nanny and the vehicle you drive is supplied by your employer, make sure you talk with them about the following:
1 - Install winter tires.
2 - Pack an emergency kit (extra clothing and footware, shovel, sand or kitty litter, emergency food and water, booster cables, warning light or road flares, road maps, ice scraper and brush, flashlight, first aid kit, blankets)
3 - Check road and weather conditions before driving
4 - Remove all snow from the vehicle before each trip
5 - Leave early when driving in poor conditions, so you don't have to rush.
6 - Slow Down and Wear your Seatbelt.
Safe driving starts with getting your vehicle ready for the winter... Does your battery stay fully charged? Your motor needs a fully charged batter to start in cold weather. Make sure all lights work and headlights are properly aligned. Check or service your brakes to ensure even braking. Check tire pressures often. Make sure the radiator cap, water pump, and thermostat work properly. And make sure the heater and defroster work as well. Windshield wipers need to be in good condition... replace blades that streak, and fill up on winter washer fluid. If your vehicle is winter ready, it will help avoid breaking down when you really don't want to be stuck on the road!
You can visit www.weatheroffice.gc.ca to check local weather reports before you leave the house. Environment Canada will issue a warning if they expect blizzards, heavy snow, freezing rain or drizzle, cold snaps, and winds.
Be extra alert when driving in poor conditions and always, always, ALWAYS wear a seatbelt. Make sure the kids' car-seats are up to code and harness them in properly.
If the windows are frosted, make sure they are fully defrosted and you can see clearly out of ALL windows before driving.
Stay on main roads. Wear warm clothes, and dress the kids up in winter gear as well.
If possible, try to have a fully charged cell phone with you, just in case you get stranded and need to make a call.
Learn how to handle skidding, as this can happen easily when changing lanes on roads that have leftover snow and slush in the center lanes; There are plenty of helpful diagrams online.
Leave extra room between you and the car ahead of you, and pay close attention to the road. Don't be afraid to tell the older kids to keep quiet so that you can concentrate. Explain to them that driving can be difficult, and that you will answer all their questions when you arrive at your destination. Care games and notebooks are a great way to keep them busy. Check out our Kids' Car Activities board on Pinterest for some great ideas!
For more tips and advice: http://www.canadiannanny.ca/blog/cat/tips_advice/