Location: Bowdoin / Security / Student Transportation / Winter Driving Tips

Office of Safety and Security

Winter Driving Tips

*Stop for Concord Coach Lines is located at the Brunswick Visitor Center at Maine Street Station at 16 Station Avenue

  • Most highway crashes are caused by a combination of speed, driver inattention/distraction, and following too closely.  So slow down, wake up, and back off!
  • Most winter crashes are the result by driving too fast for the road and weather conditions.
  • When driving on snow or ice, keep both hands on the wheel at the 3 and 9 clock positions. Reduce your speed considerably and increase your following distance.
  • The secret to avoiding skidding out of control on snow and ice is to make SMOOTH and GRADUAL motions when steering, braking, and accelerating. Imagine this: There is a pitcher of milk (or beverage of your choice) on the hood of your car and you want to drive so that you don’t spill a drop. And there is an egg between your foot and the gas and brake pedals and you want to press down gently so that you don’t break it.
  • Wear your seat belt; the odds are that that simple act will prevent serious injury or save your life in a crash.  The driver is responsible for making sure all passengers are buckled.
  • Texting while driving is illegal in 35 states and dangerous in 50.  The minimum fine for texting while driving in Maine is $100.
  • Maine has a “Move Over Law” that requires that drivers pass stopped emergency vehicles at a prudent speed and move a lane over if it is safe to do so.
  • Make sure your tires and wipers are in good condition and your lights are all working.
  • Don’t forget an ice scraper and snow brush. Remove ALL snow and ice from your vehicle.
  • Use your headlights day and night, good weather and bad. This helps other drivers and pedestrians see you sooner. Watch for pedestrians and bicyclists, especially at dusk and at night.
  • Be prepared for an emergency. Keep extra warm clothing, hat, boots and gloves in your vehicle in case of a breakdown or accident. A bright flashlight can be a lifesaver.
  • If you break down or have an accident, pull as far to the right as possible to stay clear of oncoming traffic. Turn on your hazard flashers. Call 911 or AAA for assistance. Stay inside your vehicle unless it is unsafe to do so.
  • One more thing: Don’t drive after drinking, period. You will be arrested for drunk driving if you have a blood alcohol content of 0.08 (which is about four 12 oz. beers in an hour, but they can arrest you for less). There is “zero tolerance” for drivers under age 21 who have consumed any amount of alcohol, and a violation will result in a license suspension of 1-2 years.