Steering Through Winter
Whether you’re heading to Grandma’s for Christmas dinner or managing a delivery fleet, it’s wise to be prepared for winter roads.
On the Wet Coast, hydroplaning is common. Your tires lose contact with the road surface and float on a film of water. Fluctuating temperatures, meanwhile, can cause black ice to form unexpectedly—especially in the Fraser Valley or further inland.
Black ice is commonly found on roads with shaded areas, bridges, overpasses and intersections where car exhaust and packed snow freeze quickly. Slow down as you approach these slick areas.
If you hydroplane or skid on black ice, ease off the accelerator, and look and steer smoothly in the direction you want to go. Don't brake. With black ice, you may need to repeat this manoeuvre several times until you regain control. If you are on ice and skidding in a straight line, step on the clutch or shift into neutral.
Of course, if you’re not confident about road conditions, your vehicle condition or your ability to drive safely, it’s best to stay put. As WorkSafeBC points out, “Don’t Know? Don’t Go.”
Source: ICBC’s Winter Driving
WorkSafeBC’s Shift into Winter page also offers a wide range of safety tips and resources for personal and professional driving, including a Winter Survival Checklist.
Munching Through the Holidays
Cooking up a feast? Need nibblies for New Year’s Eve? Here are a few recipes to help you along the way.
1. Turkey: Dry-brined, 45-minute, or smoked
2. Appetizers: 101 Minimalist ideas, Martha Stewart Cocktail Party, vegan
3. Holiday Collections: Food Network Christmas, Epicurious Hanukkah
4. Dessert Collections: Martha Stewart Heavenly Holiday, Bon Appetit
5. Cocktails and Mocktails: CNBC Top 10 Cocktails, LCBO Mocktails (Liquor Control Board of Ontario)
Walking in a Winter Wonderland
Vancouver Police recently issued an odd warning for pedestrians: beware of missing storm drain covers. Metal thieves have been stealing the large grates that cover catch basins near curbs and allies. Unsuspecting pedestrians may step through leaves and snow into catch basins as high as six feet.
Even without the added hazard of missing covers, rain and snow can make walking outside treacherous. Seniors, in particular, find themselves at risk on slippery sidewalks.
B.C.’s Ministry of Health offers these safety tips:
And, ‘tis the season for helping. Don’t be shy about asking for a helping hand when navigating slippery streets.
- Wear shoes and boots with adequate traction
- Slow down
- Inform others about your plans, and carry a cell phone
- Keep your salt and shovel indoors to avoid slipping on your way to fetch them
- Keep walkways clear and railings sturdy
What's On In
PHOTO: Grouse Mountain Resort
Peak of Christmas
Grouse Mountain Resort
November 24 to December 24
Christmas in Williams Park
Township of Langley
December 3 to 15
Festival of Lights
Van Dusen Botanical Garden
December 7, 2011 to January 1, 2012,
except Christmas Day
Dine Out Vancouver
see web site for venues
January 18 to February 3, 2013
Year of the Snake Asian Expo
January 31 to February 3, 2013
Norman Rothstein Theatre
February 7 to March 3, 2013
Stay Warm, Stay Safe
WINTER HEATING CHECKLIST
- Furnace, chimney and vents professionally inspected during last 12 months.
- Fireplace screen is metal or heat-tempered glass, in good condition and secured.
- A covered metal container to hold cooled ashes sits at least 10 feet away from any building.
- Portable space heaters have automatic shut off, are plugged directly into an outlet, and stand at least three feet away from anything that can burn.
- Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms tested and working.
View full checklist from the National Fire Protection Association.
Quick Safety Tip
USE DIRECT DEPOSIT
Senior citizens are often victims of bank scams. Depositing funds directly into your account prevents con artists from intercepting your cheques in the mail. You can also reduce the amount of cash you carry by using a bank card. Remember to guard your PIN.
Source: Surrey RCMP