Prepare for Inclement Weather
LLate fall and early winter can be a beautiful time to travel with your horse, but this time of year is also notorious for inclement weather that can quickly sneak up on you. To better prepare, keep your eyes on the sky, and check the weather forecasts for developing weather conditions. If conditions really deteriorate, reconsider your travel plans. Stay home. If you’re already on the road, find a safe place to sit out the storm.
However, you might get caught in inclement weather — such as driving rain, dense fog, slick mud, and light snow — despite your best efforts. Or, the need to be on the road (such as an emergency trip to the veterinarian) may outweigh challenging weather conditions or an iffy forecast.
Here, I’ll first tell you how to check your tires’ traction. Then I’ll go over how you can prepare your tow vehicle and trailer for maximum visibility and safety in inclement weather.
Learn how to evaluate tire traction and prepare your rig for optimal safety in challenging weather conditions.
Evaluate Tire Traction
Tire traction is crucial for both your tow vehicle and trailer. There are few things more frustrating than getting your rig stuck, sliding off the road, jackknifing, or getting high-centered in a ditch, even during a slow-motion incident. Optimal traction can help prevent such incidents.
To evaluate your tires’ traction, check the treadwear grade, traction rating, and tire age. Here’s how to evaluate each one.
Treadwear grade (how long your tires will last over surfaces) is a comparative numerical rating based on the tire’s wear rate when tested under controlled conditions on a specified government test course. For example, a tire graded 200 would wear twice as well on the course as a tire graded 100. The actual performance of a tire depends upon the actual conditions of use and may depart significantly from the test conditions due to variations in driving habits, servicing, road characteristics, climate, weight, etc. Get the best-quality tires you can afford.
The traction rating indicates a tire’s ability to stop a vehicle moving straight forward on wet pavement. (This is supposed to
HEIDI MELOCCO PHOTO Late fall and early winter can be a beautiful time to travel with your horse, but this time of year is also notorious for inclement weather that can quickly sneak up on you, such as light snow.