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Driving an RV in the winter requires extra precautions

Some people only use their RVs during the spring and summer. However, if your RV is properly equipped and you feel ready to take on the weather conditions that a Michigan winter can bring, you may choose to take your RV on a winter road trip to enjoy the sights.

The first step toward ensuring your family's safety is making sure your vehicle is properly equipped. That means good snow tires, a well-charged battery and brakes that are appropriate for snowy conditions.

If your RV is ready to go and you have all the provisions you'll need in case you have to stop for awhile until the weather clears, you need to exercise caution on the roads. Even if you're used to driving a car or SUV in winter weather, driving an RV is a completely different experience.

Even if the road looks clear, be on the lookout for "black ice" -- especially on bridges and shady areas. If there's some rain or melted snow on the ground, these areas will freeze first.

It's essential to drive slowly when the roads are wet or snowy. Leave plenty of room in front. Both will help you stop or slow down safely if you need to.

Try to avoid driving at night. If you're going to be on the road for more than a day, make reservations at an RV park you can reach before sunset. If you can't avoid driving at night, remember to use your low beams. All drivers need to do this since headlights reflect off snow and ice, and other motorists can be blinded if your high beams are on.

If you're driving an RV, you need to find a place to stop if the weather worsens or the roads aren't in good condition. It's a good idea to have a list of places along your route where you can park and rest until you feel safe getting back on the road.

Even if you follow all of these safe driving practices, you can't guarantee that everyone else on the road will drive safely. If someone makes a sudden, reckless and/or illegal move, it's more difficult for you to react than if you were in a smaller vehicle. If you suffer injuries in a crash caused by another driver, make sure that you get the compensation you need to cover your expenses and damages.

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