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(WTOP)   A look at why so many of the accidents after a major snowstorm seem to involve SUVs with four-wheel drive   (wtop.com) divider line 232
    More: Dumbass, four-wheel-drive  
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17454 clicks; posted to Main » on 06 Mar 2013 at 10:30 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-06 12:14:29 PM  

Pocket Ninja: 0 Red Flags That Suggest the Person Driving a 4-Wheel Drive Vehicle Doesn't Actually Know How to Operate One:

1) The 4X4 looks more like a mini-van.
2) The 4X4 is spotlessly clean.
3) The 4X4 is regularly parked in the suburbs.
4) The 4X4 has an automatic lift gate or sliding side door.
5) The 4X4 has personalized plates that do not appear to reference hunting.
6) There are young children in the 4X4.
7) There is no dog in the 4X4, or if there is a dog it is a poodle.
8) There is a luggage carrier located somewhere on the 4X4, either atop it or on a small platform hooked to the back.
9) When operating the 4X4 in normal conditions, the driver goes around speed bumps in parking lots.
10) The person refers to his or her 4X4, which is not a pickup, as a "truck."


You might be a redneck...
 
2013-03-06 12:15:50 PM  
• nothing will help you on ice - not tires, not 4wd, not anything - except extreme caution
• in snow and slush, snow tires are key - especially if you have RWD. the germans have known this for decades and do just fine
• there is no such thing as an all-season tire - with the possible exception of the Nokian WRG2, which is awesome and well worth the price.
 
2013-03-06 12:17:21 PM  
Ha!  It was laways hilarious watching SUVs and large truck drivers get trapped in the flooded streets during monsoon season in the desert.  They always thought their big cars were going to make it through the river of water.
 
2013-03-06 12:19:26 PM  
Has no one caught this "Anderson suggests drivers limit using four-wheel drive to roads with lots of snow that haven't yet been plowed." ?

Unless this is just a grammatical error, the expert is seemingly encouraging the exact opposite of the article's point...
'If you do drive 4 wheel drive, make sure there is a fark ton of snow and the road hasn't been plowed..otherwise stay off the road'
 
2013-03-06 12:19:59 PM  
...   ≠ four-wheel stop

Two-wheel drive drivers often don't get enough traction to make that mistake.
 
2013-03-06 12:20:39 PM  
Oh, I just have to share.  The other week in St. Louis we got dumped on.  I had to go to work that night.  I took it easy and got there in one piece.  Only one lane was open on the highway.  I had this assclown running up on me, flashing his lights, honking, etc.  He made a couple of failed attempts to pass me, but there was really no way for him to pass.  I was cruising about 30 (I was pacing myself behind the snow plow).  As I exited, he got off with me, pulled up next to me, rolled own his window and accused my mom and I of incest, then floored it right through the red light.  He tried to turn left and instead kept going straight into a guardrail.  After the light changed, I went by nice and slow and gave him a little wave.  What a waste of an Escalade.
 
2013-03-06 12:22:34 PM  
I drive a Jeep wrangler with mud terrain tires that have a really aggressive tread pattern. All that means is that if I get stuck I can still get myself out of the ditch, it does not mean I can drive on the highway as if it's a dry and sunny. I generally see pickup trucks and luxury SUVs in the ditch. I'll winch them out if there are children present, because the kid had nothing to do with thier parent driving like an idiot.
 
2013-03-06 12:24:04 PM  

Too Pretty For Prison: Oh, I just have to share.  The other week in St. Louis we got dumped on.  I had to go to work that night.  I took it easy and got there in one piece.  Only one lane was open on the highway.  I had this assclown running up on me, flashing his lights, honking, etc.  He made a couple of failed attempts to pass me, but there was really no way for him to pass.  I was cruising about 30 (I was pacing myself behind the snow plow).  As I exited, he got off with me, pulled up next to me, rolled own his window and accused my mom and I of incest, then floored it right through the red light.  He tried to turn left and instead kept going straight into a guardrail.  After the light changed, I went by nice and slow and gave him a little wave.  What a waste of an Escalade.


That is what dashcams are made for. So you can post it to Youtube and we can all laugh.
 
2013-03-06 12:27:40 PM  

Earpj: I have 5 kids. A minivan served me just fine while they were growing up. No need for an SUV.


Well, to each their own.  No way a mini-van would pull our boat though, and I don't think I'd want to drive one in the winter in the northern plains even with FWD/AWD.
 
2013-03-06 12:28:58 PM  

theorellior: Three Crooked Squirrels: But around here (SLC), it's anyone with a big vehicle.

When I commuted 30 miles a day on I-35 near Austin, I discovered that the initials "Z71" were basically a self-selecting identification tag for douchebags.


That is a horseshiat area of the freeway any way. But you are right.
Faribault
 
2013-03-06 12:29:30 PM  

Explodo: UberDave: It's a Trap!: Because every farker with 4 wheel drive thinks it makes them invincible in ANY weather condition.  I had some dumb fark in an SUV go barreling by me in horrendously thick fog.  I was unaware 4 wheel drive granted you x-ray vision.


They also think they can take any terrain.  Personally, if I see questionable terrain, I park and walk or turn around.

If you don't know that you yield to other 4wd vehicles traveling up (when you are traveling down) and you haven't practiced picking lines, then don't take that road regardless of your vehicle's "power" or rated ability.

Example, and it's fairly obvious, but if you can't see the line in something like this:

[s14.postimage.org image 604x453]

Then go no further.

It looks an awful lot like a pretty mundane little hill you have there.  I've seen minivans and Civics drive hills like that.  Maybe I'm losing some sense of scale there, but it really doesn't look like it.

Yay living in Colorado with a Rubicon!


Yay for living in California where the trail your Jeep is named for is ;)
 
2013-03-06 12:30:07 PM  

vernonFL: People get overconfident

People in the DC metro area can't drive for shiate. No, really, people here can't drive, especially in snow.


Do tell, which part of this planet contains the humans who do know how to drive, since every area gets labeled with "no one around here knows how to drive in the snow".
 
2013-03-06 12:30:53 PM  

Maud Dib: UberDave:


I drive PINS a lot. This sign should really say, "Abandon all hope, all ye who enter without 4WD."
One day, many years ago, some guy hit the sand and drove the full 60 miles to the Mansfield Cut in a got-damn 4 door Lincoln Continental. He finally got stuck while realizing he couldn't swim across the cut. Took 3 big ol' 4WD trucks in tandem to pull him out.

[i865.photobucket.com image 850x662]


That's insane.  I haven't been down there in years and never go further than 20-30 miles.  I need to head back sometime soon.  Maybe I can figure out how to camp out there without being covered in sand the entire time.
 
2013-03-06 12:32:43 PM  
That's why I drive on the median during a snow storm and then skid onto the road.
 
2013-03-06 12:33:48 PM  
JackieRabbit:  drive with their flashers on

I hate people that do this.

"Oh no, it's raining, better put my flashers on and drive 15mph in the middle lane on the interstate!"

If the weather has degraded to the point that you feel you are enough of a hazard that you need to put your hazard lights on, then get the fark off of the road.
 
2013-03-06 12:35:17 PM  

Pocket Ninja: 4) The 4X4 has an automatic lift gate or sliding side door.


If you are referring to the gadget for lifting a wheelchair up into the vehicle, the same families who have a wheelchair-bound person may also have legitimate concerns about being able to get that person somewhere despite a snowstorm.
 
2013-03-06 12:42:18 PM  

FlashHarry: nothing will help you on ice - not tires, not 4wd, not anything - except extreme caution


Actually, what can help is colder temps. "Warm" ice is quite slippery (the theory being a layer of water is more easily formed, which is what makes it slippery). If the ice is cold enough, it has traction like concrete.
 
2013-03-06 12:42:20 PM  
Having lived in Colorado for fourteen years, I can attest to the truth of this. I have no idea exactly how many 4WD vehicles (trucks, SUVs, whatever) I saw off the road and down an embankment during that time, but it had to be in the dozens. Driving from Denver to any ski area in the snow, you were sure to see at least two, three, four rigs on their side (or their roof). My little Honda did just fine, however. Keep you speed down, don't make sudden lane changes, and PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT THE OTHER GUY IS DOING.
 
2013-03-06 12:45:13 PM  

Sharksfan: Earpj: I have 5 kids. A minivan served me just fine while they were growing up. No need for an SUV.

Well, to each their own.  No way a mini-van would pull our boat though, and I don't think I'd want to drive one in the winter in the northern plains even with FWD/AWD.


Must have a hell of a boat that for the northern plains that exceeds the 3,500lbs capacity of most modern minvans.

Don't boat, but its nice to be able to put large items in the back of the van.  4x8 plywood fits well with the rear seats down and mid seats out.
 
2013-03-06 12:48:13 PM  
Pocket Ninja:10 Red Flags That Suggest the Person Driving a 4-Wheel Drive Vehicle Doesn't Actually Know How to Operate One:

1) The 4X4 looks more like a mini-van.
2) The 4X4 is spotlessly clean.
3) The 4X4 is regularly parked in the suburbs.
4) The 4X4 has an automatic lift gate or sliding side door.
5) The 4X4 has personalized plates that do not appear to reference hunting.
6) There are young children in the 4X4.
7) There is no dog in the 4X4, or if there is a dog it is a poodle.
8) There is a luggage carrier located somewhere on the 4X4, either atop it or on a small platform hooked to the back.
9) When operating the 4X4 in normal conditions, the driver goes around speed bumps in parking lots.
10) The person refers to his or her 4X4, which is not a pickup, as a "truck."


I would like to add

2b) The 4x4 is lumped with snow except the little bit to let the driver see out the front window.
11) the 4x4 does not have its lights on in the middle of the day while its snowing
 
2013-03-06 12:49:43 PM  

mysticcat: Answer: tires


This. I have a 4wd suv that I take out yo the trails all the time but my current tires can not handle the mud at all. Half a mile in and my tires are so caked with mud they are useless they are barely even rudders at that point. The next set are going yo be a good BFG off road tire.
 
2013-03-06 12:51:41 PM  

wingnut396: Must have a hell of a boat that for the northern plains that exceeds the 3,500lbs capacity of most modern minvans.


Dry weight of the 22 foot Pontoon + 150Hp engine is something like 3200 pounds - that's before gas, gear, etc, so it's borderline.
 
2013-03-06 12:52:48 PM  
Oh, and for God's sake, leave a little room between you and the car in front of you!
 
2013-03-06 12:54:30 PM  

Myria: We of SoCal collectively ask, what's snow?


It's that white shiat they have up on Big Bear.
 
2013-03-06 12:54:37 PM  
Yes tires do make a hell of a difference. I have Goodyear MTRs on mine and they are not loud but they have knobs which provide good grip in rain and snow but suck on black top. There are also certain vehicles which should not have 4wheel anything because they are useless in it.

/Drives a 2003 Jeep Wrangler LJ
//Rubicon
///Dana 44 nuff said.
////not stupid enough to forget being safe
 
2013-03-06 12:55:34 PM  

Sharksfan: Perhaps engaging FWD doesn't help on wet or slushy roads in the DC Metro - but it (along with traction control) sure as hell does help in those conditions in states with "real" winter, such as MN where I grew up (9 miles from Canada) or WI where I currently reside.

4WD with slow speeds = win in most negative winter conditions.


In those areas, it's really only the extra ground clearance that helps. It's why the upper Midwest features so many beater FWD sedans. You rarely need 4WD if you're trying to stay on a road.
 
2013-03-06 12:55:36 PM  
Reason #1: Most people who own an SUV don't know how to drive it and only bought in the belief that it would help them survive the inevitable accident.
 
2013-03-06 12:56:17 PM  
Sharksfan:
Well, to each their own.  No way a mini-van would pull our boat though, and I don't think I'd want to drive one in the winter in the northern plains even with FWD/AWD.

Maybe not. 

Sorry if I missed it, but I remember your post being about fitting kid stuff. That's what I was replying to, not truck stuff.
 
2013-03-06 12:58:41 PM  

Earpj: Sorry if I missed it, but I remember your post being about fitting kid stuff. That's what I was replying to, not truck stuff.


Like anything there's multiple reasons.  We actually tried several vehicles before we bought the giant truck.  I think we amused the sales guys because we'd show up with all of our stuff (I had a hitch extension thing for some of it) and see which vehicles it would fit in.

Most didn't fit it.  Even a GMC Acadia wasn't big enough, and they are pretty decent sized vehicles.
 
2013-03-06 12:58:53 PM  

titwrench: mysticcat: Answer: tires

This. I have a 4wd suv that I take out yo the trails all the time but my current tires can not handle the mud at all. Half a mile in and my tires are so caked with mud they are useless they are barely even rudders at that point. The next set are going yo be a good BFG off road tire.


Good idea. Let us know how they do on SOLID ICE.
 
2013-03-06 01:00:24 PM  

dv-ous: Gough: Not to take this thread off road, but I have a rant about people turning left.  Have they stopped teaching new drivers NOT to turn your wheels to the left until you start to actually make the turn???  I've lost track of the times that I've seen some nimrod get into the left-turn lane, crank their wheels, and get rear-ended, propelling the car into oncoming traffic.  Don't turn the wheels and you get a dent; turn the wheels and get a head-on.

Oh. I never thought of that - that must be why it's a rule. (It was on the MN Driver's test as of, like 2005 and is a state law. I don't remember it being covered in Michigan either in Driver's Ed or on the written test, but the '90s were a crazy time.)


I'll follow you guys offroad (even though I'm just in a FWD compact).

Weird traffic advice I heard was that while waiting to turn left at a busy green 4-way stoplight, you should go in and "claim"the intersection, so if it turns red, you can turn left in front of the opposing traffic when they come to a halt. And therefore keep your queue of left turn traffic moving.

I never did this, since I figure you'd get in the way of ambulances / firetrucks that might come along. And also, more congested cities have "don't block the box" signs to keep people from sitting in the intersection. But I do do the left turn on yellow arrow thing if it looks safe.
 
2013-03-06 01:01:13 PM  

Jument: Endive Wombat: I wail on my farking horn when people do not pull out/play with their phones and impeed the flow of those behind them.  Not pulling out infuriates me to no end.

You should try driving in Seattle. You'd have a coronary. People here are the most passive drivers I have ever seen. Turning left without a green arrow is rocket science, apparently.


When I first moved here, I had this idea that Seattle drivers must be expert drivers because of the slick road conditions they drive through so often.  Silly me!  I have come to find out otherwise.
 
2013-03-06 01:01:13 PM  
almost all "SUV" in america with 4x4 capacity have NO control over which wheel the power goes to, which makes them butt-ass worthless.

without some kind of traction control system, its shiat.
 
2013-03-06 01:03:51 PM  
Sharksfan:

Like anything there's multiple reasons.  We actually tried several vehicles before we bought the giant truck.  I think we amused the sales guys because we'd show up with all of our stuff (I had a hitch extension thing for some of it) and see which vehicles it would fit in.

Most didn't fit it.  Even a GMC Acadia wasn't big enough, and they are pretty decent sized vehicles.


True enough. 

I looked at a Dodge Dakota before I bought my last van. There was hump in the back. How was I supposed to fit my double stroller AND groceries back there? 
Rediculous.
 
2013-03-06 01:03:51 PM  

Flint Ironstag: Particularly funny with the original Audi Quattro. Locking the diff (which they suggest for snow) actually turns off the ABS. It does mention that fact in tiny fine print...


You actually stop faster in snow with ABS off.

\As to whether you stop straight...
\\In snow (or gravel), plowing is faster than a friction stop. ABS prevents plowing.
 
2013-03-06 01:04:42 PM  

offmymeds: Let us know how they do on SOLID ICE.


Is there any other kind of ice?
 
2013-03-06 01:07:04 PM  
It's pretty simple, people who own 4 wheel drives are more likely to go out in the snow thinking the 4 wheel drive means they can drive in it with no problem. Therefore they are out in greater numbers and tend towards less caution.
 
2013-03-06 01:07:23 PM  

lilbjorn: Reason #1: Most people who own an SUV don't know how to drive it and only bought in the belief that it would help them survive the inevitable accident.


So very, very, very true. SUVs today are nothing but mini-vans for image conscious women (and men). What's worse is that many of them do not have AWD/4WD and those that do are generally only sold to soccer moms concerned about "safety."

This is coming from someone who owns and AWD vehicle. But I didn't buy it thinking it was somehow "safer" because all 4 wheels propel the vehicle, but rather that I'd be able to tackle all the hills between my house and work which are almost never plowed during the few decent snows we do get each winter. It's a Legacy sedan btw, nothing bigger than the average family sedan, just more ground clearance and AWD to make it go where I want it to.

I learned how to use AWD on Cheat Mountain (Snowshoe Mountain) in WV when I worked there for two years. AWD doesn't help you stop, it  can help you turn on snow if you know how to use it right (you have to get it sideways in the turn and do a bit of the Scandinavian flick) but unless you're doing it right, it actually can contribute to understeer, and it doesn't mean you can drive at regular speeds in poor weather.
 
2013-03-06 01:09:41 PM  

BHShaman: Drove to NYC from Maine in a snow storm 3 weeks ago.
Drove back from NYC to Maine in a storm 2 weeks ago.

I drive an AWD V6 Highlander. AWD is awesome, but it does not overcome the laws of physics or allow the deduction of points from common sense (wisdom and intelligence -2 modifier). I saw SO MANY people in 4x4s driving way over the speed for such conditions and as I passed their stuck vehicles later on down the road I just hoped no one was hurt.

There is really little need for 4-HI on a true 4x4. Most people SHOULD go without it.


4-hi is really good for sand, but that is a different kind of driving condition

/ used to live in Galveston and needed it for the beach and west end fishing spots.
// now live in metro Detroit and trying not to be that guy with the Texas tags in the ditch during a snow storm
/// because 3 is a magic number
 
2013-03-06 01:10:41 PM  
Well subby, I rack it up to a lack of understanding the property of inertia.
 
2013-03-06 01:10:44 PM  
Very simple, 4 wheel drive is for going not slowing.
 
2013-03-06 01:12:00 PM  

Evil Mackerel: Well subby, I rack it up to a lack of understanding the properties of inertia.


FTFM
 
2013-03-06 01:13:04 PM  
Without reading the article:

douche/idiot drivers who think 4WD means something other than "power is going to all four wheels"
top-heavy POS vehicles

Article:

pretty much that
 
2013-03-06 01:16:13 PM  

This text is now purple: offmymeds: Let us know how they do on SOLID ICE.

Is there any other kind of ice?


Touché!
 
2013-03-06 01:16:49 PM  
Lexus RX drivers. Self-entitled bizzles who... wait, this was about driving in snow? Never mind.
 
2013-03-06 01:21:44 PM  

JustFish: Got a little subaru outback, and will never go back to two wheel drive.

The problem people have is F=MA. For christ sake, yes, four wheel drive will help, but it doesn't change the physics people.

First thing I do when it snows, no matter the car I have at the time, is go out to an empty parking lot and practice emergency turning / braking. You have to know the vehicle and it's limits, and each one is different. Slapping some safety features like ABS and AWD on a car doesn't change the fact that it's a GIANT HEAVY SUV.


The only mention of a Subaru so far...

Fark, I am disappoint.

My 07 Impreza Outback handles like a dream in the snow.  I need to remind myself how reliable it is the next time I think of buying anything else.
 
2013-03-06 01:24:40 PM  
I have to take offense to the individuals that say  ALL 4x4 drivers are IDIOTS.  I have two, the first is a Chevy 3500HD 4X4 that hauls my boat, horse trailer, and toy hauler.  The second is a Chevy Tahoe 4x4 that I haul my kids and their friends to all their sporting events.  When it snows I can neither get into or out of my drive way.  I don't always use 4 wheel drive, and honestly the 9 years that I have owned my 3500, I have used it maybe 9 or 10 times, but when I need it, it's nice to have.

The difference between me and SOME drivers (not necessarily 4x4) is I have common sense and know my limitations to what I and my truck can and can't do in certain weather conditions.

Yes, Yes I know this is FARK.
 
2013-03-06 01:26:17 PM  

offmymeds: titwrench: mysticcat: Answer: tires

This. I have a 4wd suv that I take out yo the trails all the time but my current tires can not handle the mud at all. Half a mile in and my tires are so caked with mud they are useless they are barely even rudders at that point. The next set are going yo be a good BFG off road tire.

Good idea. Let us know how they do on SOLID ICE.


I don't get much of that in San Diego. I have driven on solid ice in up state New York and there are some similarities between that and having your tires so caked with mud to the point there is yo tread showing.
 
2013-03-06 01:27:27 PM  
Tanner seems to like his Evo....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNCDaRnF-k8
 
2013-03-06 01:27:59 PM  

genepool lifeboat: 4 Wheel Drive =/= 4 Wheel Stop

Either you know how to drive in snow, or you make friends with the tow guy.


Says the guy who's never downshifted a manual 4x4

/ice racer
//grew up in Jeeps and Scouts in the Colorado mountains
///never gone off a road in a 4x4 unplanned
////also got passed a lot during snowstorms, but always got where I was going
 
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