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17 Tips and Tricks for Driving in Severe Weather

Tornado Highway
Severe weather (of all kinds) can cause many problems for anybody caught by surprise out on the road; here are a number of tips and tricks that you can use in order to stay safe.

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Severe weather (of all kinds) can cause many problems for anybody caught by surprise out on the road; here are a number of tips and tricks that you can use in order to stay safe.

Earthquakes

1) Movement of the ground while driving can disrupt the vehicle's ability to remain stable and grip the ground, so it is important to gradually slow down. Decreasing speed too quickly can further weaken the vehicle's grip and may increase the chances of collision, especially if other drivers are also having a difficult time controlling their vehicles.

2) Furthermore, earthquakes can cause structural damage that may lead to the collapse of buildings or items such as trees and power lines falling over, so it is important to remain in the open as much as possible. No structure should be assumed safe until it has been examined.

Flash Floods

1) Flooding may occur as soon as a few minutes after a downpour begins, and can come unexpectedly. If there is significant water on the roadway (6+ inches), avoid driving into it. Water can hide depth, so even if it looks shallow enough to cross, it may not be safe.

2) If possible, drive to higher ground and wait for the flooding to subside.

Hail Storms

1) Trees are not safe during heavy hail, but buildings are. Drive under a shelter to help minimize damage to the vehicle; shelters include parking garages, overpasses, tunnels, and similar places.

2) Set your headlights to low beams and drive slowly. Driving in hail is similar to driving in the rain, but the ice has a greater chance of causing damage (including smashing windows) and can be difficult to drive on, particularly when thick.

Extreme Winds

1) Be aware that larger vehicles are more affected by the wind than smaller ones, and give extra room around other vehicles. It may be difficult for drivers to maintain a straight heading; the winds may push them towards other lanes, and remaining close can significantly increase the chance of a collision.

2) Much like earthquakes, is is often important to drive slower during high winds. Sudden changes in wind speed can cause you to over-correct your speed or heading, but driving slower can help reduce the problems this causes.

Thunder and Lightning

1) Remember that flashes of lightning can blind you and make it so that you cannot see hazards. As with the winds that may accompany it, slowing down will help, and so will pulling to the side of the road and turning on the emergency flashers. This will help ensure that other drivers can see your vehicle.

2) Furthermore, you should remain inside your vehicle and avoid touching metal. Cars are actually a very safe place to be during a thunderstorm, especially if parked, even if lightning hits the vehicle.

3) Do not remain under trees. They can be struck by lightning and collapse on top of your vehicle; it is much safer to be in the open, even if there is a higher risk of the vehicle being struck by lightning.

Tornadoes

1) Do not drive during tornado conditions. Tornadoes can easily lift vehicles into the air and fling them considerable distances. However, if you are already driving when the conditions begin, then...

2) Do not attempt to drive away from a tornado. They can change speed and direction very quickly. It is much safer to abandon the vehicle and get as low as possible, preferably into a ditch or other area below ground-level. Some forms of severe weather can be driven in, but tornadoes are not one of them.

Winter Weather

1) Ice can make it difficult to see, so clean the windows. Do not use hot water to melt the ice; it may re-freeze. Instead, use a scraper, defrosting chemical, and heat the inside of the vehicle. This may fog up the windows, but they should be clear by the time you begin driving.

2) Remember that snow and ice can make gripping the road difficult, but you can drive only as fast as is safe. This may be only a few miles per-hour. However, you may also have chains or studded tires that can help with driving on ice; do not assume these will work perfectly, however.

In All Circumstances

1) Avoid downed power lines. You should always assume that the wire is live, and stepping on the ground near a downed wire can be extremely dangerous. If you have the contact information for your local electrical department, you may wish to inform them of the downed line so they can take care of it as soon as possible.

2) During most forms of severe weather, turn on the radio when it is safe to do so. There should be an emergency channel that will provide information on where storms are headed, what areas are dangerous, and similar items that will be important to know.

Driver's License Needed to Vote in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania's new voter id laws
With the national election less than two months away, many states are passing new voter identification laws requiring photo identification in order to vote. A driver�۪s license is a type of photo ID that would count, and Pennsylvania is one of those states, so now is the time to consider taking the Pennsylvania DMV driver�۪s test so you can have your say in November.

With the national election less than two months away, many states are passing new voter identification laws requiring photo identification in order to vote. A driver�۪s license is a type of photo ID that would count, and Pennsylvania is one of those states, so now is the time to consider taking the Pennsylvania DMV driver�۪s test so you can have your say in November.


Although the voter ID law has been sent to the lower courts for further review, many in the state aren�۪t prepared for the law if it were to take place. However, only 34 percent of registered voters are aware of the law, but 98 percent of registered voters believe they have the right ID.��Half of Pennsylvania�۪s counties either have no photo ID center, or only have one that is open once or twice a week. With this in mind, DMV practice tests can come in handy to make the trip worthwhile or to help ensure voters that they have to right type of identification on Election Day.


This law is especially important for young voters (ages 21-34), who are a highly targeted voting demographic this election cycle, but one that hardly ever votes. Young voters are also unlikely to have the right ID in order to vote, meaning that this law and the need to practice for the driver�۪s test is even more important to them. This is also important for young voters because a college ID will only count if it has your name, a photograph, and an expiration date on it. Some college IDs don�۪t come with an expiration date, so those won�۪t count on Election Day as an appropriate ID.


Even though the law isn�۪t in effect yet, and might not even go into effect, it�۪s better to be safe than sorry. It�۪s not long before a decision will be made, since a decision needs to be made before November. However, you don�۪t want to be stuck without the right ID come Election Day. Since the driver�۪s license is one of the easiest forms of proper identification to get, it�۪s best to go for it and to get it done. The best place to start to improve yoru chances and to make the trip worthwhile is with a DMV practice test.

How a New Driver Can Save Money

As the last drop of Martinelli�۪s cider is siphoned from the bottle in celebration of your teen passing his or her driving test, you realize you have a precarious financial situation on your hands. It�۪s likely they�۪ll want to get on the road as soon as dawn breaks and you haven�۪t added them to your car insurance plan, bought them a vehicle, or even considered all the additional expenses.

As the last drop of Martinelli�۪s cider is siphoned from the bottle in celebration of your teen passing his or her driving test, you realize you have a precarious financial situation on your hands. It�۪s likely they�۪ll want to get on the road as soon as dawn breaks and you haven�۪t added them to your car insurance plan, bought them a vehicle, or even considered all the additional expenses.

A new driver adds a laundry list of new expenditures your wallet isn�۪t ready for. Vehicle repairs, car registrations, and increased insurance costs are only the tip of the roadway iceberg.

You are up a creek without a steering wheel.

Help is here.

The tips below will not ease the anxiety of rising fuel costs, the stress of finding the right car, or the gut-wrenching nervousness endured while awaiting the safe return of your teen each time they leave the house on wheels, but they will prevent your bank account balance from heading south.

Here are some great ways to save in other financial areas, so you can afford to have a new driver in your family:

1.Reduce phone costs

Cell phone bills can be outrageously steep, but two cups and a string, messenger pigeons, smoke signals, or a traveling horse courier can be much cheaper options.

2.Create a bartering system at your local market

Before money, clans and tribes got what they wanted by trading. Animal furs, moccasins, and pelts make great bartering tools so stock up on whatever beaver, possum, and cheetah fur you can get your hands on. You should have no problem acquiring the household basics with the right trading loot. I know what you�۪re thinking; where am I supposed to get my hands on some cheetah fur living in Nebraska? Don�۪t fret. Those old slippers currently taking residence in the back of your closet, now home to several species of household insects can be passed off as moccasins. They should net you at least an egg or two.

3.Hire Jillian Michaels from Biggest Loser

Food is an essential piece of our survival but today most Americans overeat. You can cut costs by having Jillian hang out in your kitchen and yell obesity slurs at your family any time they go to take a bite of anything. Rumor has it she just loves yelling, so she�۪ll work for free.

4.Change Golf Saturday to Bird Watching Wednesday

A round of golf with your closest pals can be a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon, but it�۪s costing you a fortune. Trade in those clubs for a pair of quality binoculars you�۪ll be watching birds instead of trying to putt for them in no time. Your wallet will thank you.

5.Get a new roommate named Rumpelstiltskin

Adding another person into the family fray could add additional risks, but one who can turn the loose straw in your yard into gold, could really prove his worth.

6.Stop shopping, and begin Hunting/Gathering

For years civilizations survived on hunting and gathering techniques. These long lost methods can still work today, unless you are gathering in your neighbor�۪s garden. In that case, you probably don�۪t want to be the only inmate in jail for stealing a zucchini. Gather wisely. This will cut down on food costs, but not necessarily decrease the chances of getting poison oak, so be safe out there.

7.Put a Lemon shark in your pool after Shark Week on Discovery Channel airs ;

Pools provide an excellent form of fun for the entire neighborhood, but are expensive to maintain. On a hot day a dip in the pool can cool the skin, invigorate the senses, and trigger our innate, primal feelings - unless there is also a flesh eating fish in the pool. One look at the ferocious creature and the kids will go running, and your maintenance costs will plummet. ;;

8.Exchange your pet for a stuffed version of the animal

Pets are great, but food and care for them can be expensive. Find a good home for your current feline or mutt, and then find a similar looking stuffed version. Periodically move the creature around the house so it appears to be moving around. Perhaps start with a couple of hours by the food dish, another few at the edge of the bed, then a couple out in the yard, so your family gets used to its routine. Although there haven�۪t been any confirmed trials to support, it�۪s safe to say that a stuffed animal will eat far less than a real animal. You should be able to start saving on pet food costs immediately, and you�۪ll then be able to afford the month�۪s car payment for your teen.

9.Entertainment costs

Movies are fun to watch, but they can be pricey. At $12-15 a pop, taking a family to the theater can cause you to wake up the following day with a financial hangover. Instead, take your family to a local park, preferably one with large trees and plenty of foliage. When they least expect it, sneak away and slip into a Bigfoot costume. Then, start foraging around in nearby until you hear a scream. If you can�۪t afford a costume, just make sure to find a shaggy brown dog in your neighborhood and shave him when your neighbors aren�۪t looking. This is a much cheaper form of entertainment than four tickets to Madagascar 3.

10.Find another source of electricity

With the world of competitive biking become more popular every day, there is a lot of energy going to waste. Have an aspiring biker come over with a stationary bike and hook it up to run your household devices. Assuming you find an athlete with quads of steel, you should have enough electricity output to cancel your electric bill. If you can�۪t find any bikers locally, find a squirrel with an insatiable appetite for running on a wheel.

If you adopt some of these techniques you�۪ll find yourself saving money in no time, and haves happy teen on your hands.

Have You Considered Nitrogen for Your Tires?

Putting nitrogen in your tires is a new practice that�۪s emerging in repair shops and auto dealerships all around the country. It�۪s exactly as the name says: putting nitrogen in your tires instead of regular air. It�۪s actually much better for your tires in the long run. Nitrogen tire inflation is a green technology that not only will improve fuel efficiency, but will keep tires at proper tire pressure for a longer period of time.

Putting nitrogen in your tires is a new practice that�۪s emerging in repair shops and auto dealerships all around the country. It�۪s exactly as the name says: putting nitrogen in your tires instead of regular air. It�۪s actually much better for your tires in the long run. Nitrogen tire inflation is a green technology that not only will improve fuel efficiency, but will keep tires at proper tire pressure for a longer period of time.

This is a great maintenance choice for younger or less experienced drivers, who may not be as adept to handling routine maintenance or an emergency situation. Since putting nitrogen in your tires keeps them at the right pressure for a longer period of time, the risk for a tire blowout decreases. It also decreases the risk of having a flat tire, and having to call for help or pulling over to put on the spare (if you have one). Flat tires generate more than 3 million AAA calls each year.

When young drivers are first learning to drive and to acquire their license, there�۪s so much to learn prior to the test. This includes the rules of the road, operating the vehicle, and paying attention to pedestrians and other drivers. Learning to drive should also include car maintenance, although it�۪s tough to expect a teenager to remember to change the oil and to check the tire pressure. This is why nitrogen tire inflation is an excellent choice. It�۪s one less thing to worry about as an inexperienced driver learns how to be on the road first.

Putting nitrogen in your tires may have an initial cost, depending on where you go to get the service. Some sell brand new tires already filled with nitrogen, while some charge a few dollars per tire to purge the air and refill with nitrogen. Some will even fill your tires with nitrogen for free. Overall, nitrogen tire inflation is a practice that�۪s great for accommodating new drivers, while improving fuel efficiency and tire life as well.

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