Safety On The Road

by Carole Ashley

The weather conditions when you drive can cause you a lot of trouble. One million in 6.2 million traffic accidents in a year are weather-related.

Fortunately, newer vehicles are now equipped with sophisticated technology solutions to help drivers navigate through a variety of weather conditions safely.

You should think about the different weather conditions you might encounter and have a plan of action for each.

Brakes on the road. Brakes can lock up on slippery surfaces, so it's best if your vehicle has an Anti-lock Brake System (ABS). This would enable you to apply maximum brake pressure without having to worry about your brakes locking up.

Wheels. To keep your wheels from spinning on slippery surfaces, look for vehicles with Traction Control Systems (TCS). The technology keeps the wheels from spinning by applying brakes to all four wheels. All-Speed Traction Control is the newest version of this technology, and it can give you the best acceleration on slippery roads by decreasing excess engine power.

Going Straight. You'll have more control over your car if you have the Electronic Stability Program (ESP). It keeps the vehicle moving in the intended direction by applying selective throttle and braking to the correct wheels to keep the car on course. While this works on all surfaces, it is especially helpful when you drive on mixed surface conditions, like snow, sleet, ice, or gravel.

Stop, Drop and Roll. The Electronic Roll Mitigation (ERM) can put any vehicle rollover concerns to rest. If driving conditions approach a rollover scenario, ERM applies a burst of full-braking power to the appropriate wheel to help stabilize the vehicle.

With so many advances in technology, drivers must understand their car's safety and technology features.

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