Hamilton, NJ - Driving with a snow- or ice-covered windshield and windows, side-view mirrors or headlights invites a crash. Also incredibly hazardous is failing to clear ice and snow from your car’s roof, hood and trunk. These turn into dangerous projectiles that fly off and distract or impact others drivers navigating the roads alongside you.

“It’s not just a courtesy to your fellow drivers, it’s the law in New Jersey,” AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesperson Tracy E. Noble said. “Take a few minutes before you leave the house to clean your car of ice and snow, icicles and all the frozen matter that’s accumulated over the past several days.”

Also note:

·                     Dirty headlights can reduce visibility by as much as 90 percent. 

·                     Clear windows, mirrors and lights with an ice scraper, brush or spray de-icer.

·                     Regularly clean lights and your license plates of dirt and sludge. 

AAA also urges those who have SUVs to guard against SUV overconfidence. SUV’s have the same difficulty maintaining control and stopping as other vehicles. “Caution becomes the operative watchword – snow covered roads can be dangerous for every type of vehicle, even those with four wheel drive,” said Noble. 

Being prepared and knowledgeable is the first line of defense for driving during inclement weather; however, the situation is always dangerous. AAA advises motorists, “If you don’t have to drive don’t.”

Other tips for safe, courteous driving during frigid weather:

·                     Make sure windshield wipers and defrosters are in good working order, and that washer reservoirs are filled with no-freeze windshield washer fluid.

·                     Road salt, slush and grime are especially hard on a car’s finish.  To help prevent rust and paint damage, keep cars washed and waxed.  A full or self-service car wash makes the job easier when temperatures are low.