Ice and packed snow on the road can cause your vehicle to skid, especially if you are driving too fast or going downhill. If you start to skid:
If you cannot control your vehicle on a slippery surface, try to find something to stop the skid. Try to get a wheel on dry pavement or on the shoulder of the road. You may have to edge slowly into a snow bank or bushes to stop the vehicle.
To prevent skidding on slippery surfaces:
If the brakes get wet, dry them by lightly pressing the accelerator (gas) and brake pedals at the same time so that the vehicle drives against the pressure of the brakes. Perform this light pressing only until the brakes dry.
If your wheels drift off the pavement, grip the steering wheel firmly, ease your foot off the accelerator (gas) pedal, and brake gently. Check for traffic behind you, gently steer back onto the pavement. Do not pull or turn your steering wheel suddenly; this may cause you to drive into oncoming traffic.
An acceleration skid usually happens when the drive wheels lose traction on the road surface. To maintain control of a skidding vehicle, do not apply the brakes. Ease off the accelerator (gas) pedal and straighten the front wheels as the vehicle begins to straighten itself out.
This type of skid is usually caused by braking too hard at a high rate of speed and locking the wheels. The vehicle will skid no matter which way the steering wheel is turned. Take your foot off the brake to unlock the wheels. Then, straighten the front wheels as the vehicle begins to straighten out. If your vehicle is not equipped with anti-lock brakes and you enter a locked wheel skid, step on the brake gradually until you are at a safe speed to continue driving. However, if you press the brake pedal and it sinks to the floor, quickly pump the brake pedal to build pressure. As you’re pumping the brakes, down shift your vehicle into a lower gear or neutral to slow down. Then try using your emergency or parking brake to stop. Slow the vehicle gradually until you are at a safe speed to continue driving.
If your accelerator becomes stuck you should:
Warning: Turning the ignition off while the vehicle is moving may lock the steering wheel; you will not have control of the steering.
Never turn your vehicle’s ignition to the “lock” position while it is still in motion; the steering will lock and you will lose control of your vehicle.
The most common causes of collisions are:
If you see a vehicle’s hazard lights ahead, slow down. There may be a collision or other road emergency ahead. Stop and give assistance if asked by anyone, or pass very carefully.
Avoid driving near collisions, if possible. Those injured will be helped faster if other vehicles aren’t blocking the road.
If you are involved in a collision:
When you have a collision, report it to DMV within 10 days if:
Each driver (or the driver’s insurance agent, broker, or legal representative) must file a report with DMV using the Report of Traffic Accident Occurring in California(SR 1) form. Go online at www.dmv.ca.gov or call 1-800-777-0133 and ask for the SR 1 form. The CHP or police will not make this report for you.
You or your representative must make this report whether or not you caused the collision, even if the collision occurred on private property.
Your driving privilege will be suspended:
According to the CHP, if your vehicle becomes disabled on the freeway:
In certain circumstances (when there is not enough shoulder space or if there is a guardrail or an area to safely stay away from the freeway lanes), exit your vehicle and stay away from your vehicle. Use your emergency blinking lights at your discretion according to weather conditions. The lights may be helpful, but they could also attract drunk drivers. The CHP Freeway Service Patrol (FSP) provides free emergency roadside services during commute periods. If FSP cannot start your vehicle, it will be towed free of charge to a location approved by CHP. FSP will also contact additional assistance for you. CHP will notify an auto club or towing service.
If you get stuck on the freeway because your vehicle stops running, FSP will:
The FSP program will not:
Call 1-800-TELLCHP (835-5247) to find out if the FSP operates where you are and how to contact the FSP.
If your vehicle stalls or is otherwise disabled while blocking any part of the train tracks, there is no accident or injury, and: