Tips for Safer Walking and Driving this Winter

car winter weather

As the days become shorter and the weather turns colder, it’s important to prepare yourself for common hazards that come with the season. Follow these tips to walk and drive safely this winter.

Safer walking

Wet leaves, ice and snow can quickly make walkways slick. You can be ready for slippery conditions around your home by doing the following:

  • Shop for ice melting products now so you’re ready to apply when weather conditions call for it. 

  • Check outdoor lighting and replace bulbs if necessary to keep walkways well-lit.

  • Check your shoes and boots for wear, making sure there is plenty of tread for traction. 

  • When walking, keep your eyes on your path and take the safest route, keeping in mind it might not be the quickest.

  • When decorating for the holidays, secure electrical cords and decorations with proper clips so they don’t interfere with walkways, steps and porches. 

  • If you ever encounter a downed power line while out walking, always assume it is carrying electricity. Stay at least 30 feet away and immediately call 911. Tell others to stay away as well!

Safer driving

During colder months, driving conditions can change quickly. Rain can cause wet leaves on the ground to become slippery, and falling temperatures can turn precipitation into ice and snow. It’s a good idea to:

  • Check the tread depth on your tires and replace if necessary.

  • Make sure your wiper blades are in good condition and get new ones if they aren’t.

  • Slow down, allow extra time to get where you’re going and maintain a safe distance when following other cars.

  • In the morning, watch out for kids walking to and waiting at bus stops in the dark.

  • If you come across a downed power line while driving, never drive over it. Always assume it is carrying electricity. Stay at least 30 feet away, keep others away and immediately call 911. 

  • If you are ever involved in a vehicle accident and a power line or electrical equipment comes in contact with your vehicle, stay in the vehicle and call 911. If you are in imminent danger due to fire or other hazards, know how to exit the vehicle safely. Watch our video for step-by-step instructions.

Follow FirstEnergy and its electric companies on Twitter and Facebook all year long for tips and resources to stay safe when using electricity in and around your home.

Last Modified: December 11, 2023