Top tips for staying safe on the road this winter

Winter is upon us, bringing with it rain, wind, snow in some areas and reduced daylight hours throughout. Lovely.

The cold season (between June and August) can be the most dangerous time of the year for motorists.

Statistics from the government's Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development show that there were 101 fatalities from road accidents in August 2014 and 83 in December 2014.

Given those figures, it might be a good time to get your car insurance sorted.

Nevertheless, here are some top tips to help you get from A to B safely this winter.

Service your vehicle

No, this doesn't mean going to see a mechanic and getting a ridiculously expensive bill. Not necessarily anyway. Simply check your tyre tread, headlights, indicators and windscreen wipers to make sure they're all up to scratch. If any of these aren't working properly or your tyre tread is less than 1.5mm, it's probably best to bite the bullet and go and see your mechanic.

Drive smoother

Sudden acceleration, braking and turning are all bad ideas on wet or icy roads – once you've lost traction it is very hard to regain it. As such, you should reduce your speed and increase your following distance to cars in front.

Turn on your headlights

The gloom of winter filters into even the finest of days, so visibility can be affected. Regardless of the time of day, have your headlights on not only to see, but also to be seen.

Drive fresh

Stoppages are often caused by the lovely winter conditions, which can increase driver fatigue due to more time at the wheel. If a journey is taking longer than usual, be wary of the early signs of tiredness such as yawning, sore eyes, poor concentration and boredom. Pull over at a safe rest area and get some sleep or a coffee. However, remember that sleep is the only cure to fatigue; coffee will just postpone it.

Buy a new car

They're not quite driverless just yet, but new advances in technology means cars are getting not only safer, but also smarter. Digital features like electronic stability control to prevent skidding, auto emergency braking for an imminent crash and blind-spot alarms are helping Australians drive safely.

If you would like car finance for a new vehicle, talk to the team at AAA Finance. With access to 23 lenders we have a wealth of car loan options; we can even complete your application within 24 hours.

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