Winter Driving Tips

Keeping Your Car in Shape

Keep windshield wipers and defoggers in good condition. Visibility is not only a good safety idea, it's a state law. A snow brush, ice scraper, and gloves are a wise investment. Additional tips for winter driving include:

  • Carry a flashlight, flares, sand, a shovel, cell phone, or spare change for a phone call.
  • Check brakes.
  • Check headlamps.
  • Check heater and other safety equipment.
  • Check tire treads.
  • Check windshield washer fluid levels.
  • Clear car windows, hood, and roof before starting to drive.
  • Have the engine tuned.
  • Keep the fuel tank filled, topping it off before reaching half a tank.

Winter Travel Tips

Travel on main routes. The most traveled roadways are usually cleared and sanded first. A shortcut down a back road might not save any time if the road hasn't been plowed. Also, if help is required, main roads are usually the best patrolled.

Ride together to work - in a carpool or vanpool. Road-clearing operations will be more successful with fewer vehicles on the road. Plus, riding together saves money and gasoline, reduces auto wear and tear, reduces harmful emissions, and is more enjoyable.

Always assume road conditions are worse than they are and allow additional travel time. Drive cautiously and courteously.

View the Winter Road Conditions Map updated by the McLean County Highway Department

Helpful Weather Information

Tune to a local radio / TV station that provides regular weather bulletins and reports on road conditions, such as the statewide road conditions by the Illinois Department of Transportation. For pre-recorded road condition information, please call (800) 452-4368.