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Black ice is one of the most dangerous winter road hazards a driver can come across. Not only is it impossible to obtain traction once you’re on it, but it’s also incredibly difficult to spot beforehand. As such, if you plan on taking to the streets at any point during this winter season, it’s crucial you know how to best protect yourself. These are some of the top safety tips for driving on black ice and what you can do now to prevent an accident later.

Be Able To Spot Black Ice

Black ice is so hard to recognize because is resembles water on the pavement’s surface. You may think you’re about to drive through a puddle, only to find that you’re sliding instead. Fortunately, the outdoor temperature can help you more accurately tell the difference. Should the weather drop below 32 degrees, the point that water freezes, the development of black ice is inevitable. This is especially true in areas where water tends to collect, like around curves or at the bases of inclines.

Drive Slowly and Keep Your Distance

Keeping your speed down and maintaining a larger distance from the car in front of you is also an important safety tip for driving on black ice. Once you start driving over it, you’ll have very little control over where you stop or whether you can brake at all. Because of this, you must do what you can to maximize your response time and give yourself the space to swerve out of the way of other cars. Even if you must slow to a crawl in some places, it’s better than starting to slide.

Don’t Use Your Brakes if You Can Avoid It

Additionally, try not to use your brakes at all when driving over black ice. Braking mechanisms work by creating friction between the tire and the road. With a layer of ice in the way, braking only makes you slide faster. Needless to say, it can get dangerous very quickly. To reduce your chances of losing control, it’s recommended you avoid stopping on sections of road where you suspect there to be black ice.

Know How To React if You Slide

Occasional sliding can be inevitable when you live in an area that’s known to develop black ice. As such, you also want to know how to respond should you come into contact with black ice. If you notice that you’re sliding, keep calm and gently turn into the skid while pumping your brakes. When the skid slows, slowly turn your steering wheel back into the normal alignment. Though there’s no tire that can reliably maintain full traction when driving over black ice, having the highest-quality models possible can greatly improve your odds. At RNR Tire Express, we sell some of the most affordable tires in Greenville, NC, while maintaining an inventory of top-notch products from many beloved brands. For more information about what winter tires we have in stock, give us a call.

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