What to do if your car slips or slides on snowy roads

Snowfall in Georgetown on Saturday, Dec. 29
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Winter driving can be inconvenient, difficult and dangerous.

We recently decided to quiz drivers on their knowledge of what to do and what not to do when driving in winter weather.

When it comes to driving on snow and ice covered streets, many folks think they know the answers for what to do if they lose control of their car.

“The main thing I do is make sure that I do not overreact. I just let the car do what it's going to do,” said Lenny Holbrook, driver.

“I think you probably just need to pump the brakes a little bit because putting full pressure on the brakes just takes it into a full slide,” said Marla Patton, driver.

But in the past week we've seen dozens of snow and ice-related wrecks in our area, proving that winter driving isn't as easy as some think

“You never know what people are going to do or what kind of road conditions you can run into. It could look clear but then it could be black ice and slick spots that haven't been cleared off well,” said Otis Roller, a driving instructor in Lexington.

If your car hits a slick spot and starts to spin, Roller says the first thing you need to do is slow down and turn in the direction that your car is spinning.

If your car suddenly loses traction and starts to slide, Roller says to keep your foot on the brake but do not pump the brake.

The driving instructor we spoke with told us that above all, the most important tip for winter driving is to slow down.

When you get stuck on ice or hard packed snow do not apply pressure on the gas.

If you apply too much power, you will just spin your wheels. Rather, use the "easy does it" approach when starting on icy surfaces.

When you have to stop quickly in icy or snowy conditions, apply strong, steady pressure to the brake pedal and don't let up.

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