Next time you’re creeping across the snow in your Astra at four miles an hour spare a thought for Ice Road Truckers' Hugh Rowland. He’s spent his whole life driving at high speeds across treacherous, icy terrain. Here’s what he’s learned:
01 Get proper tyres
“You’ll want good tyres, with lots of grip. I use double coin tyres that bite into the snow and ice. It means that the colder it is, the better traction you get. Much better than having to put those ice chains on them.”
02 Escape the skid
“Whether you’re driving a car or a truck: if you’re on ice and start to skid you should do the exact opposite of what you’d do normally. If you feel you’re losing control don’t automatically reach for the brakes. Hit the gas and you should straighten out.”
03 Keep an eye on the ice
“You can tell how dangerous ice will be to drive over just by looking at the colour of it. Pretty ice is pretty dangerous. If it looks real nice and blue, it’s probably not very safe. If it’s really black ice, it’s probably good, thick ice and you’ll be safe.”
04 Get the kit
“We all carry survival kits. Blankets, matches, lights, medical supplies food… all kinds of stuff. You never know when you’re going to be stuck somewhere, having to survive. Last year, I dislocated my shoulder and I had to duct-tape it back into place. I drove for three days just to get to a doctor.”
05 Embrace the locals
“Snowstorms are the worst. You’re sitting there, stuck, sometimes for three or four days. And it’s not like your town is right around the corner. As a result I know lots of Eskimos. I’ve slept in igloos and everything.”
Ice Road Truckers is currently shown on History.
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