Winter is Here!

Car tires on winter road covered with snow

The winter is upon us and sooner or later, New Jersey will see itself covered in a freezing blanket of billowy snow. But as New Jersians, life doesn’t just stop because of a few flakes (or feet) of the white stuff. Getting your car “winter ready” before the first snow will ensure you’re ready to face the road ahead. Ensure vehicle fluids are changed, tires are checked or replaced, and ensure all exterior lights are in proper working order. Then follow these driving tips if you need to travel in the cold and snow:

  • Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Most vehicles keep the tire pressure information on the driver side door panel.
  • Check and replace (if necessary) windshield wipers.
  • Top off wiper fluid.
  • Keep your gas tank at least half full.
  • Do not use cruise control in wet, wintery, icy weather.
  • Avoid hard breaking in wet weather as this can make your vehicle spin out of control.
  • Look and steer in the direction you want to go.
  • The normal dry pavement following distance of three to four seconds should be increased to eight to ten seconds.
  • Keep non-clumping kitty litter or wood chips in the trunk of your vehicle. This will help your tires gain traction if you become stuck in snow.
  • When traveling long distances, make sure to keep a blanket, flash light, water, and snacks in your vehicle in case you become stranded.
  • When in doubt, stay home. If driving conditions make it extremely difficult to travel, please do not attempt to go out.

For more information on winter driving visit http://exchange.aaa.com/safety/roadway-safety/winter-driving-tips/#.WG0-FxsrJPY

Share the Road, Save a Life!

share-the-road1The warm weather has finally arrived and that means more people are leaving their cars behind and opting for pedal power to get to their destinations. Not only is this a fun way to explore the sights and sounds of the GardenState, but it also incorporates physical fitness into your day. And for many NJ residents, bicycling is the only form of transportation to get to and from work.

If you’re an avid bike rider, you’re probably aware of the rules of the road, but if you’re not very experienced, or just prefer to drive in the comfort of your car at all times, it’s important to remember that the road belongs to both bicyclists and automobiles. We need to practice mutual respect and follow all state and local traffic laws in order to reach our destinations safely.

New Jersey’s Motor Vehicles and Traffic Regulations laws recognizes bicycles as a vehicle and grants bicyclists all the same rights and responsibilities as any other automobile traveling along our state’s roadways. This means, that bicycles are permitted on all roadways, unless expressly stated otherwise, and must follow the same traffic rules and patterns as motor vehicles.

According to the Tri-State Transportation Campaign, there are an average of 173 reported bicycle accidents in MiddlesexCounty every year. In 2010, the National Highway Traffic Safety Commission reported 12 fatalities related to bicycle accidents throughout the state.

So what can we do to prevent bicycling accidents and fatalities? Bikeleague.org offers these common sense tips to bicyclists and motorists:

 

Bicyclists:

Obey all vehicle traffic laws, lights and signs

Use hand signals to signify stops and turns to other vehicles

Stay to the right of the road and always ride in the same direction as traffic

Wear bright colored/reflective clothing and a proper fitting helmet

Use front and rear lights when riding at dawn and dusk

Make eye contact with the driver of other vehicles and proceed with caution.

 

Motorists:

Reduce speed when approaching bicyclists

Do not tailgate or follow too closely; Give the bicyclist space

Yield to bicyclists and give them the right of way, do not try to beat them to the intersection.

When passing, leave four feet between you and the bike rider

Do not blast your horn next to a bicyclist, as this may startle the rider and cause them to lose control.

Make eye contact with the bicyclist and proceed with caution.

Remember the road belongs to everyone. Following these simple rules will ensure we all have a safe and happy trip.

Let us Come to You This Spring

MH900439345No two companies are alike.  Employee make-up, company goals and geographic locations are just some of the markers that define a company.  At KMM, we understand this reality.  In fact, our approach in assisting companies with commuter benefits makes this a priority.

Interested in learning more about KMM’s programs? Wondering if a fellow employee commutes along the same road? Interested in learning about transit availability near your job? Why not host a transportation fair at your worksite?  A KMM transportation fair is easy to schedule and can be held in conjunction with an employer event, such as Earth Day, or a benefits fair.  KMM staff can also set up an informational table at a central location during lunch to address questions regarding transportation issues and offer informational brochures on a host of commuter programs. You can even schedule an information session for your club or civic group.

In addition, KMM offers a comprehensive package of services, incentives, information and recognition developed by KMM to help employers make it easier for their employees to get to work.
Here are some of the services KMM can provide:

  • On-site transportation fairs
  • On-site transit passes and tax benefit programs
  • Site-specific newsletters for employees

Start fresh this Spring and contact KMM today for a customized transportation fair.  Visit us online or call our offices at 732-745-4465.

Winter Driving Tips

snow
With winter in full swing here in Central New Jersey, we thought it would be best to brush up on our winter driving skills.  Before you climb into your car, take a moment to review and refresh!

Driving in Bad Weather

• Carpool: two heads are better than one.
• Sign up for the KMM Emergency Traffic Alert system and receive traffic reports for the roads YOU travel on.
• Be alert. Don’t drive when fatigued.
• Allow plenty of extra time for trips.
• Have alternative routes for how you’ll drive from point A to point B. Anticipate worst-case scenarios and prepare for them.
• Make sure your cell phone is fully charged and have the charger handy.

Tips for Readying Your Car

• Keep the gas tank at least half-full when driving in bad weather. You’ll be more prepared for periods of slow driving or when traffic stops altogether.
• Keep your wiper blades in excellent condition to ensure good visibility.
• Make sure your tires have good treads.
• Carry emergency supplies in your vehicle, no matter what the weather. A good emergency checklist includes a blanket, window scraper, flashlight, first-aid kit, shovel, jumper cables, flares, and non-perishable snacks.

Braking and Skidding

• When applying the brakes on a vehicle equipped with conventional brakes, avoid locking them by pumping.
• For vehicles equipped with anti-lock brakes, apply the amount of brake pressure needed, and don’t pump the brakes.
• To avoid skidding, stay within the speed limit, and, in poor weather, slow down. Keep adequate distance between your vehicle and others.
• Slow down before entering turns or bends, steering steadily.
• While on icy or slippery roads, don’t brake heavily or jerk the steering wheel.

Snow, Ice or Mud Conditions

• If your car is stuck in snow, ice, or mud, proceed carefully. Acceleration that is too rapid will spin the wheels and only dig the vehicle in deeper.
• Try to stay calm and turn the steering wheel gently from side to side to clear snow, ice, or mud away from the wheels. Lightly accelerate forward with the wheels straight ahead, alternating with a slow movement in reverse. This may help rock the vehicle out of its rut.
• Be aware that moisture on overpasses and bridges becomes icy more quickly than on ground-level roads, since cold air is beneath these structures.

This is the perfect time of year to investigate ridesharing or mass transit as an alternative for your commute. Contact KMM to inquire about carpool or vanpool matches for your route, and get free mass transit schedules for your area. Why not start commute habits now that will benefit you all year-long? It could make for a better commute!