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Expert gives advice for driving on dangerous roads as winter storm approaches middle TN

(Fox 17 News)

As people across the midstate prepare for freezing rain, ice and snow on Friday, driving conditions are expected to be treacherous.

Fox 17 News sat down with an expert to helping drivers, who have to be out on the road, avoid crashes.

Brentwood Driver Training’s Owner Jeremy Lyon said several people make the mistake of hitting their brakes when when they slide on ice and snow.

Lyon said the best thing to do is keep the foot off the brake and accelerator, and turn the steering wheel in the direction of the slide. If the back of the car is skidding to the right, turn the steering wheel to the right.

When it’s too dangerous for drivers to use the brake to slow down, Lyon offered another emergency option.

“You go through the downshift of your transmission,” Lyon said. “D, 3, 2, 1 and you'll be going pretty slow at this point but you still need to stop. That's when you would gently squeeze the brake, not mash it. Your instinct is going to be to slam on the brakes, but you want to gently squeeze it and pump it a little.”

Bridges and overpasses always ice over first. It's very important for drivers to increase their following distance with the car in front of them.

Make sure to stay 7 to 10 seconds behind the car in front of you. To test that, note when the car in front passes a specific sign or tree, and count to 7- 10 seconds until your car passes that same sign or tree.

Lyon said the roads that are not large but still heavily used are roads that should be avoided.

It’s been almost two years since middle Tennesseans have dealt with ice and snow covered roads. Drivers in the Nashville and Brentwood area said they'll keep those experiences in mind when driving on the road Friday.

“Whatever I do I just try not to hit the brakes so that I don't slide and spin,” Brentwood driver Zoe Coutras said.

“The last time we had a lot of snow, I was here and I was stuck at work,” Nashville driver Jamesetta Cleveland said. “I had to go get my children so it was kind of scary seeing cars on the side of the road. Some of them were SUVs that you would think people could drive in this weather but they had flipped over. It took me 4 hours to make a drive that normally would take about 15 minutes.”

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