Fall Driving in the Pacific Northwest
Fall in the Pacific Northwest is a beautiful time of the year, but this natural beauty comes with a set of hazards when driving.
Every year thousands of people are injured and hundreds are killed due to daylight savings time changes and the change of the seasons.
What to Expect
Keep yourself and others safe by preparing your vehicle for the season and keeping these things in mind:
- Weather: Sudden changes in temperature, rain, snow and fog all make for hazardous driving. Be aware of the weather and current driving conditions each time you get behind the wheel.
- Daylight Savings time means the morning sun might be right in your eyes. The sun goes down an hour earlier so it gets dark a lot sooner, remember your headlights. Headlights save lives.
- Be sure your vehicle maintenance is ready for Fall, and the weather of the season.
- Children: Children are back to school and you may find them outside playing at or after dusk. Be sure to slowdown and be prepared to stop.
- Animals: The critters, big and small are preparing for winter. Be on the lookout for them, slow down and watch for sudden movement when driving. Watch out for deer, they are most active between sunset and sunrise. Be mindful of increased deer movement especially in the morning and evening hours. Always wear your seatbelt and if a crash is un-avoidable do not swerve to avoid the deer instead; brake firmly, stay in your lane and bring your vehicle to a controlled stop.
- Leaves: when covering the ground they can be slippery and dangerous. Be careful when driving on leaf covered roads even if the pavement is dry. Also be sure to take the time to clear the leaves off your car before hitting the road, just as you would for snow.
Vehicle Maintenance Tips
- Check your headlights to be sure they are in working properly, as more of your driving will be done in the dark.
- Check your heater to be sure it and the defroster in your car are working properly.
- Check your windshield wipers, be sure to replace them if they bounce or squeak.
- It is also a good time to fill your windshield wash reservoir, be sure to select washer fluid that is meant for colder weather and will not freeze.
- Sun glare is more severe in the Fall, always keep your sunglasses handy and keep your windshield and windows free of streaks and dirt.
These Fall/Winter driving tips have been provided by Guide Insurance Services Agent Casey Shipley. Please reach out to Casey at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.