Driving from Central Florida to Chicago in winter
I am planning to drive from central Florida, orlando to Chicago,IL soon. Its going to be my first drive in snow.It will be before the christmas time. any suggestions on this route for winter.
A few Tips
A first trip in snow and you are driving to Chicago? Well, that sounds a little exciting. <a href = "http://www.roadtripamerica.com/travelplanning/Winter-Driving.htm">Here are some time-proven tips<a/> that might help. Most important, if you are using cruise control and the roads start getting a little slippery -- turn it off (don't use the brakes to disable it -- use the button).
Slow down. If is starts snowing heavily, stay in one lane and try and move a measured pace.
Mostly, though have fun!
Thanks for the suggestions Mark. .I'll come back & write how the route & experience was I hope its going to be one exciting trip. If anybody else has done this similar trip on this route(orlando-chicago), I would like to hear from them too. Thanks again.
Looking forward to the field report
We hope you have a blast and look forward to hearing about your trip!
Driving in the snow
here are some tips on how to drive safely in the snow.
First of all, the brake pedal is probably one of the most dangerous thing to use when you're driving on snow or ice. If you try to push hard on the brakes, you'll probably end up doing 360's in the middle of the road. Mark suggested you turn off the cruise control if you don't feel safe, but I would say don't use it at all if there's snow or ice on the road, it's really dangerous. If you go up a hill, the cruise control will push the gas pedal real hard and if it is slippery, you can get yourself in trouble. If you need to slow down, try to downshift to one lower gear if you drive standard or try to "pump" the brakes if you drive an automatic (you lightly hit the pedal several time very quickly).
If you cannot see the pavement, don't panic, just try to locate the median line or if you can't, try to locate the poles or roadsigns that indicate the end of the pavement on the sides and try to maintain a safe distance between you and these poles or signs. Never drive at a speed you cannot handle, even if other people are going faster and are pushy. If a car wants to pass, just slow down and try to stick to your right a little but don't try to completely pullover on the shoulder when you're not sure where the shoulder ends especially if some other cars are following you. They might believe that you are actually driving in your lane and they might have a little surprise when they realize you stopped your vehicle and they don't have enough space to slow down.
If you have an accident, always keep the lights and the hazards on. Make sure you're visible even in a snowstorm. Before you go on this trip, you should consider buying or bringing some equipment : blanket, hat, scarf and gloves, warm jacket, candles, ice scraper, shovel, winter tires, spare tire, jack, windshield washer for low temperatures, winter wipers, flares, flashlight, AAA membership, first aid kit, cell phone and/or cb.
Never assume you are safe to drive faster if you own a 4WD or if you see some guy driving his Cadillac 70 miles/hour on ice. You'll probably see them stranded somewhere in the snow in half an hour or so. 4WD are great but they don't offer a guarantee of complete safety. Most of the accidents I've seen in the last couple of years involved 4X4s, not necessarily because of bad drivers, but they seem to think they are invincible and obviously they're not. If the pavement seems to be wet and it's pretty cold outside, make sure it's only water and not ice before driving 75 miles/hour or else you might be a little surprised.
But don't worry too much, if you take your time and drive carefully I'm sure you will enjoy the adventure and everything will be all right. Driving must be part of the fun, so try to enjoy this new kind of driving and have a nice trip!