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How to Handle and Prevent a Skid in Bad Weather

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Diane M. Gouldsmith

Mrs. Carolotta Chapman

GE 117 Compositions I

18 November 2011 (Friday)

Unit 10: The Longman Writer

How to Handle and Prevent a Skid in Bad Weather

Feeling your car suddenly skid out of control on a wet or icy road can be terrifying experience. Your first instinctive reaction would be to step on your breaks, turning the wheel in the opposite direction, or staring at the target you are about to hit. These things can actually make the skid worse. Here are a few tip for preventing skids. First, make sure your tires have adequate threads and in good condition. Second, drive slowly in wet, icy, or snowy conditions. Third, keep an appropriate distance between you and the car ahead of you. It's a general rule of thumb is four car lengths for every ten miles per hour. This way, you will have plenty of time to react if the driver in front of you stops suddenly. Finally, slow down before entering a curve or bend. Making a turn on a curve or bend too quickly will cause you to skid out of control.

There are two different kinds of skids: front wheel and rear wheel skids. With a front wheel, take your foot off the accelerator. If the car has a manual transmission, depress the clutch. If you do not regain control of the car within seconds, then depress the break lightly; but do not break too suddenly. With a rear wheel, do not turn your wheel sharply to the right, turn just enough to straighten out the car. Bring the front wheel back in line with the rear wheels. As you turn, slowly ease off the accelerator and avoid slamming on the breaks.

In dealing with any kinds of skid, keep two basic principles in mind. One, do not panic. Keep a clear head when you go into a skid, because your reactions are likely to do more harm than good. Second, keep your eyes focused on a target in the distance. Choose a point further down the road, in a direction you are headed, and stay focused on this object. This will better able you to redirect your car so it is once again travel in the right direction.

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