SALT GRITTING .COM
Driving In Adverse Weather
In adverse weather the hazards associated with driving for work increase greatly. In winter
especially, darker, shorter days and bad weather such as rain, hail, fog or snow reduce visibility. High
winds, ice and slush can make vehicle control more difficult. Winter sun tends to be low and can cause
Employers should review their company’s driving for work risk management policy to
ensure driving in adverse weather is properly covered. Ask yourself:
· Is driving in adverse weather conditions considered?
· Who is responsible for telling employees what is expected of them?
· Are appropriate systems in place for employees who have to drive
· for work in adverse weather conditions?
· Do employees know how to handle vehicles [company provided or their own] in adverse weather
· Are employees’ familiar with the vehicle manual and any specific advice provided for driving
in poor weather conditions?
· Do you need to consider providing additional driver training for those who drive for
· Is there a plan in place for employees in the event of emergencies such as a collision, breakdown or getting stuck/stranded in
· Remember, where possible in adverse weather conditions: Limit travel as far as possible to
essential journeys only – ask yourself is the trip necessary?
SPREADING OF SALT DOES NOT MEAN THAT
THE ROAD SURFACE WILL NECESSARILY BE ICE-FREE. IN FREEZING CONDITIONS,
ALWAYS DRIVE WITH GREAT CARE EVEN IF THE ROAD HAS BEEN SALTED!
For those with no option but to drive:
· Listen to weather forecasts, travel bulletins and any advice issued by An Garda Síochána
[www.garda.ie] or the Road Safety Authority [www.rsa.ie]. Change or delay your journey as appropriate.
· Plan you journey, stick to major routes where possible. Allow extra time for your
· Inform someone such as your employer, manager or supervisor where you are going and your
estimated arrival time so that an alarm can be raised if you fail to arrive.
· Turn your lights on to ensure that your vehicle is visible to other road
· Fill your washer bottle with windscreen wash. The concentration used should be appropriate for
the weather conditions.
· Reduce your speed and drive according to the road and weather conditions, maintain greater
stopping distances (double in wet weather and ten times greater in icy
· Wear sunglasses (prescription glasses if required) if the sun is low.
· Avoid harsh braking or acceleration. Carry out any manoeuvres slowly and
· Never feel pressurised to complete a journey if weather conditions are too
· Ensure that your vehicle is in a roadworthy condition prior to driving. Check that:
· Tyres are in good conditions and inflated to the correct pressure (including the
· The vehicle has plenty of fuel.
· Wipers, defrosters and lights are in good working order.
· An ice-scraper or de-icer is available for ice or snow.
· Carry an emergency kit in your vehicle containing items such as:
· A high visibility, reflective jacket or vest in the vehicle cab (so that you can put it on
before you leave the vehicle).
· A torch with extra batteries.
· An emergency warning triangle.
· A mobile phone – for use only when parked.
· In cases where travel is unavoidable in extreme weather
conditions, consider carrying items such as:
· Warm clothing including hat, gloves and a warm blanket or sleeping bag.
· Food and a warm drink in a flask.
· Shovel and material for providing wheel traction if driving on soft ground or snow (such as
chains, old carpet, sand, gravel, cat litter or salt).
For further information see