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Safe driving is a must during New Hampshire winters

Winters in New Hampshire can be very harsh, with a lot of ice and snow on the roads. Many accidents are caused by people who do not practice safe driving in these tough conditions. Below are some tips that can get you through this winter without an incident.

First, if you do start to slide or skid, make sure that you steer into it. Your impulse is going to be to steer out of it, but you are just going to overcompensate and make things worse than they already were.

Next, you never want to push the brakes down to the floor. This just causes you to lose what little control you have on the ice. Instead, pump the brakes, retaining some control and slowing the vehicle at the same time. The only exception to this is if you have anti-lock brakes, which pump themselves automatically; you can slam them to the floor, and they will still work.

To practice both of these things, spend some time in a large open area -- like a parking lot -- where you can safely experience the hazards of winter driving without any risk of causing an accident.

Most of all, though, just reduce your speed. The stopping distances that you are used to from the dry pavement of the summer don't mean anything on snow or ice. Slow down and stay farther behind other vehicles than you feel is necessary, giving you plenty of distance if you have to stop suddenly.

If you are hurt in an accident with another driver who was not driving safely, make sure that you know what rights you have to seek compensation.

Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, "Safe Winter Driving" Dec. 09, 2014

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