RAC warns drivers to take it easy on their journey home

Motorists heading home tonight are advised to check local weather reports and traffic conditions as the bad weather causes further problems on the UK's roads.

RAC continues to see an unprecedented number of call-outs for November, with the extended evening rush hour likely to take today's total towards yesterday's level of 14,000.  Calls are rising in London, the South-East, Kent and the Midlands as the bad weather starts to impact on motorists' drive home.  

With the nation braced for a continued spell of freezing weather, RAC is expecting to see further havoc tomorrow morning with many motorists not even making it off their drives.

Alan Wilcock, RAC Patrol Ambassador of the Year, said: "The bad weather is causing serious problems on the roads across the country.  It's vital to check local conditions before heading home and if you do venture onto the roads make sure you slow down and keep your distance from the vehicle in front. Even if there isn't snow on the ground, black ice may be widespread and the roads still treacherous."

RAC's fleet of 4 x 4 vehicles are on stand-by in the worst affected areas and extra Patrols are on the ground to help stranded motorists. Wherever possible, RAC will attempt to fix the problem over the telephone to help drivers get on their way as soon as possible.

RAC offers motorists the following advice when driving in these hazardous conditions:

  • Drive only as fast as the conditions allow and remember stopping distances are longer
  • Gentle manoeuvres are key to safe driving in ice and snow - use your accelerator, brakes, steering and clutch as gently as possible
  • Check local weather and traffic conditions before setting off and if you can avoid the trip do so
  • Give yourself extra time and stick to the main roads where possible as they're the most likely to have been treated
  • If you're travelling any distance, let someone know where you're going and when you expect to arrive
  • Make sure your car windows and lights are clear from ice and snow
  • Take extra clothing in the car, food and drink, scraper and de-icer, a charged up mobile phone, torch and potentially a shovel
  • Drive only as fast as the conditions allow and remember stopping distances are longer in ice and snow
  • Black ice can just appear to be wet patches on the road surface and tends to form on bridges and overpasses where the cold air can pass above and beneath the road surface
  • If the noise from your tyres on the road suddenly becomes quiet, it may well be you are driving on ice
  • If you're unfortunate enough to skid, steer into the skid and avoid the temptation to slam on the brakes