Safe Driving in the Snow
What is the best way to Drive in the Snow?
You should use gears instead of brakes to slow down and watch for icy patches on shady parts of the road, through cuttings, on bridges and on winding stretches where ice may have formed over a thin layer of snow.
Should I carry Snow Chains?
When travelling in Alpine Areas, Snow Chains Must be Carried. In Victoria it is Compulsory for All vehicles to carry chains, during the declared Snow Season.
Authorities require that they be fitted when conditions demand, so check chains are not damaged or have parts missing and practice fitting chains before you travel. It's too late to learn at the roadside in a blizzard or freezing rain. Make sure chains are packed for easy access.
Hire chains are readily available and it is best to get them close to your destination in case of any problems. If you are not familiar with the fitting of chains ask the Hire Shop to give you full instructions. When chains are fitted to your vehicle drive slowly (eg. no more than 30/40kph.) and carefully to avoid tyre and vehicle damage.
How do I fit Snow Chains?
Chains are to be fitted to the two driving wheels. I.E. Front wheel on a front wheel drive; rear wheel on a rear wheel drive; usually front wheels on a four wheel drive. Always refer to the manufacturers handbook for correct placement of chains
When fitting, pull off to the left of the road as far as possible. Use a chain fitting bay if available, make sure your vehicle is visible from both directions
It is important to only park in designated parking areas and to follow the directions of the parking attendants.
Don't apply the handbrake. moisture can freeze cables and brake linings. Instead chock the wheels and angle the front wheel into the kerbside. Leave the car in Gear or Park.
Snow & Ice:
Remove all snow from the roof of your vehicle. It is illegal and dangerous to leave snow on the roof whilst driving.
Clear all ice from the windscreen and mirrors before driving off. Using the air conditioner on the windscreen will help to demist.
If leaving you car for overnight or longer lift you windscreen wipers slightly off the windscreen use a plastic bag or a small stick to keep just off the glass
What to carry:
Have in your vehicle in a handy spot the following items:-
Small spade, tow rope, ground sheet, gloves, old waterproof clothing, torch (check batteries), wheel chocks, first aid kit, towel
Ensure you have enough Anti freeze in your vehicle, especially if staying on mountain. Failure to do so can be very costly.
Most service stations close to the ski fields have alpine diesel, ensure you top up close to the ski fields. Alpine diesel is a mix that prevent diesel from gelling up in very cold conditions