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When it comes to winter driving in Los Angeles, what comes to mind to most of us is the rain. Especially now that the National Weather Service reported that a big storm is about to hit our area between today and tomorrow.

In order to ensure you’re safe while driving to work and back home during upcoming rainy days, the California Office of Traffic Safety and the California Department of Transportation are urging drivers across the state to focus on following a series of steps so that personal injury accidents can be avoided.

While big rains are welcome in Southern California, winter driving makes roads a little less safe for everybody. The fog, slippery roads, and sudden rainfall may all cause drivers to lose track of their surroundings, increasing the risk of accidents. To some drivers, even the lightest of rain poses a threat considering many still believe they can drive just as fast on the wet asphalt as they would in a sunny day. According to experts, focus on the road conditions should be the only thing drivers have their minds on while driving. Making sure that their cars are ready for the weather change could also go a long way.

According to Caltrans, drivers should make sure their coolant levels are balanced, their brakes and tires are checked, and their windshield wipers are functioning perfectly. Also, the heater, exhaust, and defroster systems should also be checked in order to make things easier on the driver and his or her passengers.

High winds, fog, and ice may all impact your driving this season. Making sure your car gets checked by a professional could ensure its structure is ready to deal with the weather change.

According to experts, drivers should keep in mind that, when the fog is dense, they should pay closer attention to the traffic by opening their windows and listening to the vehicles around them. Allow for a safe stopping distance by slowing your speed and avoiding to push the brakes abruptly. While driving through the fog, keep your headlights on low beam.

Drivers heading to the mountains should make sure conditions are safe before adventuring up the road. Experts are also urging drivers to have chains with them and always be prepared for delays due to sudden weather shifts. Having a kit ready with water bottles, coats, gloves, and blankets may come in handy.

If everything else fails and you end up getting stuck somewhere due to the weather, avoid leaving your car. According to experts, staying and waiting for help may end up saving your life.

Having a roadside emergency kit in your vehicle may also help you to stay safe during this period. To make sure you and your loved ones are protected, check if your car has a spare tire that is properly inflated. Also, make sure you have a lug wrench and a car jack in your trunk. If you don’t know how to use these tools, make sure you do before you hit the road. Have the number of an auto club or another auto roadside service you trust programmed into your phone as well just in case your car fails on you.

When preparing an emergency kit, make sure it contains jumper cables, rags, flashlights and extra batteries, one emergency reflector triangle, a HELP sign, extra vehicle fuses, water bottles, 15-minute roadside flares, tire pressure gauge, first-aid kits, duct tape, a tool kit, blankets, energy bars, a nylon rope, and a plastic tarp.

If you would like to know more emergency kit items considered somewhat important by the California Office of Traffic Safety, click here to read the full article

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