Winter Driving Advice

These winter driving tips will help you stay safe on the roads in the colder months:

winter driving advice for company cars

Planning ahead for adverse weather

 
  • If your journey isn’t absolutely essential, don’t take the risk
  • Check weather forecasts and know the latest travel information
  • Tell someone at your destination what time you expect to arrive
  • Make sure you are equipped with warm clothes, boots, food and a torch. In snowy conditions, take a spade or snow shovel
  • Clear and de-mist your windows and mirrors fully before you set out and carry a windscreen scraper and de-icer
 
 

Keep your vehicle tip-top

 
  • Keep lights, windows and mirrors clean and free from ice and snow
  • Add anti-freeze to the radiator and a winter additive to windscreen washer bottles
  • Check your wipers and lights are in good working order
  • Do regular tyres checks: have plenty of tread depth and keep them maintained at the correct pressure
 
 

Adjust to the conditions

 

In low visibility

  • In hail, heavy snow or rain, use dipped headlights and reduce your speed

 

 

In winter sun

  • We've said it before but we’ll say it again: de-mist your windows and mirrors fully before you start a journey
  • Use your visor and keep a pair of sunglasses handy

 

In wet weather

  • Stopping distances will (at least) double in the wet so leave more distance between you and the vehicle in front
  • The rain and spray from vehicles can make it difficult to be seen, so use your dipped headlights
  • If your steering becomes unresponsive, the water may be preventing your tyres from gripping the road, so ease off your accelerator and slow down gradually

 

In foggy conditions

  • Drive very slowly and use your dipped headlights. Use fog lights if visibility is seriously reduced, but remember to switch them off when it improves
  • Expect visibility to deteriorate rapidly and be aware that fog can be patchy so resist increasing your speed too soon

 

When roads are icy or slushy

  • It can take ten times longer to stop on ice, so drive slowly, allowing extra room to slow down and stop
  • When pulling away, use the highest gear possible to prevent your wheels from spinning
  • Manoeuvre gently, avoiding harsh braking and acceleration
  • To brake without locking your wheels, move into lower gears earlier than normal so engine braking helps you and use your brake pedal gently
  • If you do start to skid, ease off the accelerator; do not brake suddenly

When coming across flooded roads

  • If the water looks deep, take another route; don’t risk a breakdown
  • If the water is shallow enough to cross, drive slowly and steadily in first gear and avoid the deepest water which is usually near the kerb
  • Remember to test your brakes when you are through the flood water before you drive at normal speed
 

Got stuck?

On a motorway, it is best to use a roadside emergency telephone, because it will help the breakdown/emergency services to locate you easily. If you have to use a mobile phone, it’s helpful to give the closest marker post number.

It’s best to stay with your vehicle until help arrives but if you do have to leave your vehicle to get help, make sure other drivers can see you and your vehicle clearly.

All of our fully maintained leasing agreements include breakdown assistance for the duration of your contract. If you’re on a non-maintained agreement you’ll still get breakdown assistance but it can expire before your contract’s up so check your vehicle handbook before the weather turns to make sure you’re covered.

 

Fact sheet download

All these wintry driving facts and advice are also in this totally free 2-page download. Great for sending on to your leased fleet drivers to help keep them safe this Christmas and New Year.