Please don't make winter driving worse


There are plenty of topics we can disagree about. Life is full of disagreements.

Movies, music, food, politics, art, the existence of aliens, religion, wearing pajamas out of the house – we have a list longer than this winter appears to be.

Yes, this winter. I say this winter, because I would bet most of us would agree that this winter has been going on for about, oh, 42 years. It has been long, and cold and snowy and icy.

It has been yucky.

I know plenty of (weird) people who like winter. I know, I know. Who are these people and how can we allow them to have an opinion? I, for one, support their decision to be mentally unstable. I hope they are enjoying this frozen wasteland.

The rest of us just have to make it through the season to the best of our abilities. This can take some doing, I must say. Just taking out the trash can lead to an ice dancing exhibition that only an orthopedic surgeon could love.

I can deal with most of the weather. The severe cold we had last month was terrible, for sure. But staying inside when possible did the trick.

For me, it is the driving this time of year that can be the real problem. I did not grow up driving in this weather, but years of living in snow country have taught me a couple of things: Slow down, leave plenty of space between you and car in front of you, and keep an eye out for the lazy people who simply refuse to clean the snow off of their vehicles when they leave home in the morning.
I was behind a car today (last week your time) on the way to work that was driven by a person who had not cleaned the back of his or her car off at all. The back windshield was covered with snow. You could not see the taillights and brake lights or license plate due to snow.

This is illegal, right? Yes, it is illegal. The front windshield, back windshield, lights and license plate must be cleared of snow.

Yet how many people do you see daily that do no such thing? It is almost comical watching people drive with snow piled so high on their car that you could host multiple Winter Olympic events on their hood.

When you get on the highway behind a car like that, snow tends to come off and get all over your vehicle, making it very difficult to see. That’s not a whiteout, it’s the Buick in front of you that was covered in snow.

Semis can be bad as well. I try to avoid being anywhere near a semi-truck when the weather is bad. The snow on the top of trucks tends to blow off in huge sheets and smash down on anything behind it – like your car.

Even worse is ice. There are plenty of cases of ice chunk flying off of trucks and smashing into cars behind them.

Look, winter driving is hard enough as it is, folks. Please, please, please – clear the snow off of your vehicles before you leave your house. It is safer for you and everyone else on the road. Oh yeah – it’s also the law.