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To not understand why so many people drive in the snow?

(106 Posts)
littlemisssunny Sat 26-Jan-13 10:26:40

It's a genuine question as I am intrigued.

The snow last night was forecast days before so it wasn't a surprise. It was gone 8pm when it started, if it was rush hour or something I could understand it.

People were getting stuck all over the place on main roads, the gritters and ploughs were struggling to get through the traffic to clear it all. There were a lot of cars on the road!

Also saw on the news a man who got stuck on the m6 saying it came from nowhere, err no it was forecast!

I know sometimes people have to travel, and my husband is lucky that he can walk to work, but I just don't get it?

I might be unreasonable but I genuinely don't understand confused please explain!

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 15:53:18

What I don't understand is the pressure people are put under to drive in the snow, as though it were anywhere near safe.

We barely had any here last saturday (sunday it came in droves) but our brakes failed at about 20mph and we nearly went under a truck.

hiddenhome Sat 26-Jan-13 16:06:54

I swapped a shift at work yesterday evening because bad snow was forecast. Guess what? It didn't bloody snow til through the night and even then it wasn't that bad. I now have to go to work on Monday.

I'm a nurse and have to drive to work.

WMittens Sat 26-Jan-13 16:53:50

but our brakes failed at about 20mph

I would think that's very unlikely - if they failed at that speed, they would have failed in the dry. Most likely your tyres didn't have any grip, so you couldn't stop.

lovelyladuree Sat 26-Jan-13 17:23:31

I imagine if you had to phone for an ambulance, you would expect an ambulance to turn up? Completely twattish OP.

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 17:33:15

WM, all I know is that they didn't work. ie the car wouldn't stop. I don't know the mechanics of it. If this can be caused by a small amount of snow/slush in a McDonalds car park then proper snow is going to be far more dangerous.

Btw the tyres are fine. Not winter tyres. Just ordinary ones like I'd imagine most people's are.

everlong Sat 26-Jan-13 17:46:51

Because I have a car that drives perfectly in the snow wink

You know, one of those evil 4x4's.

marjproops Sat 26-Jan-13 17:50:45

I was just thinking this watching the news. can understand if people were caught in it from work, or emergencies, but to decide to 'go for a drive' for the sake of it, knowing its bad, and making poor rescue services work overtime cos they wouldnt listen to reason and just HAD to go out for 'a drive'. i mean...what?????

and then a few were complaining cos they were stuck in the snow yet they werent out for a genuine reason. whats wrong with staying at home? theyre not going to starve.

WMittens Sat 26-Jan-13 17:53:56

Btw the tyres are fine. Not winter tyres. Just ordinary ones like I'd imagine most people's are.

That's just the problem - they're not fine. 0.5% of drivers in the UK fit winter tyres in winter, and it's exactly because 'most people' use unsuitable tyres (or don't carry snow chains/snow socks) that they get stuck and have to abandon their cars.

On a side note (and sorry for the judgemental tone), doing 20mph in a slushy car park is not a good idea.

...then proper snow is going to be far more dangerous

To quote Sir Ranulph Fiennes: "there is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing." (Substitute 'clothing' for 'equipment'.)

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 17:57:16

I was leaving the car park, so not in it - there was no sluch on the road I was driving on, just in the car park I'd left seconds earlier, and I'd driven at about 2 mph on the slush...don't worry. I'm not that daft!

Changing the tyres every year is something I guess I just don't have time for. But I never imagined we'd be in trouble with no lying snow on the roads (which were just wet) and a bit of feeble slush we'd just parked in.

I guess the slush had got into the tread perhaps and clogged it up. The brakes were fine on the rest of the journey.

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 17:58:40

I think I need to draw you a map to explain the road layout smile

letsgomaths Sat 26-Jan-13 18:04:50

Because many of us simply can't afford not to work, and for many of us that means driving.

We have to work to get paid. We simply can't afford to take the time off because of snow.

It's not our fault that the government and the banks have messed up this country so much (by investing much more heavily in silly things like their own perks than snow-clearing equipment for a start), that many of us have to work as much as we possibly can to pay our ever-spiralling bills, because of the mess they got us into.

If we all had the luxury of not needing to work so many hours to pay our bills, then perhaps many of us wouldn't need to drive.

It's not our fault that in many places (London being the exception), it's very difficult to travel without using a car.

I am self-employed, I have driven to all my engagements, and I have not cancelled one single appointment because of this year's snow. It is business as usual as far as I am concerned.

JustAHolyFool Sat 26-Jan-13 18:05:40

Because it is snow, not lava.

moonstorm Sat 26-Jan-13 18:09:17

Exactly what WMittens said. What does Norway do??? They ALL have winter tyres by LAW. Last year, the snow arrived early and a lot of people still had summer tyres on. There was chaos like here. The police banned people from driving if they did not have winter tyres on. What else do they do? They drive slowly in bad conditions - you don't really see idiots overtaking too fast like here. Some steep hills have warm cables underneath that melts the snow/ ice so that they are passable.

I've said many times on here, winter tyre should be made law here. It's only the initial cost that's expensive - then you change your tyres less often - alternating summer/ winter sets makes them last longer.

WMittens Sat 26-Jan-13 18:10:11

I imagine if you had to phone for an ambulance, you would expect an ambulance to turn up? Completely twattish OP.

I'm going to spin that round, because obviously ambulances would go out: what if the ambulances didn't get stuck behind stuck cars and could actually make good time to the emergency without the roads being clogged?

Because it is slushy slippy goodness and it is fun to put on your breaks and go weeeeee

RooneyMara Sat 26-Jan-13 18:15:52

But it snows infrequently here. Norway expects and gets shedloads of snow every single year. We rarely get more than a drizzle of it.

People just won't want to invest in terms of cost or time/energy spent changing all their tyres. Then change them back again two weeks later when it's 14 degrees.

Loonytoonie Sat 26-Jan-13 18:25:58

I like the sound of snow chains. Are they easy to put on?

Not everywhere gets snow, we haven't had any. I wouldn't be happy having to spend money on new tyres for no reason. If we get snow then it is usually for 1 day a year and it has gone by the following day. Snow tyres would just be a waste of money.

Well, if you went to work in the morning, it is quite obvious that you had to return home in the evening.

The people you see going somewhere, maybe they were returning???

Cars in Norway come with two sets of tires. Summer tires, like you have in the UK year round, and winter tires, which is a legal requirement in winter in Norway.

Winter tires go on the cars the second week of October, and you incur heavy fines if the police catch you with summer tires. They check. Believe me they do.
The winter tires are replaced with summer tires in the first week of May. It is illegal to drive with winter tires in summer.

You can actually get non studded winter tires that does not damage the tarmac with summer use. In theory could be used year round, I suppose.

bluer Sat 26-Jan-13 18:42:59

Because I live half an hour away from work. Because it stayed snowing at lunchtime and by that point we couldn't send all the pupils home and because I can't leave until they have. Took me two hours on rural roads to get home...two Lorries that shouldn't be on such roads jack knifed and then there was car crash and also a tree came down due to snow weight. I would never choose to drive in such conditions but our school has a policy of not trusting weather reports and usually leave it too late to decide to abandon ship!

Unless you drive regulary on a Friday night (or anytime), to airports, camping over summer, or work in retail/transport, you probably don't realise how constantly busy the roads are.

Which is the OP's case.

WMittens Sat 26-Jan-13 19:17:39

Snow tyres would just be a waste of money.

Yeah, that's because everyone thinks they're "snow tyres"; they are winter tyres, not snow tyres (there are Mud & Snow tyres, not usually the same thing as winters).

Winter tyres outperform 'summer' tyres in cold/wet and cold/dry conditions and are suitable when the temperature is under 7 or 8 celsius - so perfectly serviceable for potentially 4 or 5 months of the year.

blobandsnail Sat 26-Jan-13 19:59:15

Because some of us actually know how to drive and aren't scared of a bit of snow?

The attitude towards snow in this country drives me mad! It's ridiculous how many people cannot cope driving in the snow. Get over it, learn to cope with it or give up your license. Because if you can't cope with snow driving you're probably not safe to drive sensibly in normal conditions.

The people who got stuck were probably stopped by some idiots who couldn't cope ahead of them, lost their grip, went off the road, stopped because they wimped out. The amount of snow was not that much, it wasn't 6ft of the stuff for goodness sake. We're not all people who see snow forecast and run home and lock ourselves up for days until it melts you know.

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