Driving in snow is just second nature to me now. Still, it doesn't matter if your a great driver or a bad one, a new driver or an experienced one, poor weather conditions can test your nerves and skills on the road. Studies show that nearly one-quarter of weather-related vehicle crashes occur on snowy, slushy or icy pavement according to www.ksl.com. Here are the Top 7 things to remember when driving in bad winter conditions.

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1. Reduce your speed. Adjust to changing conditions and allow extra time to reach your destination.

2. Don't power up hills. Applying extra gas on snow-covered roads just starts your wheels spinning. Use lower gears to keep traction, especially on hills.

3. Make smooth, careful movements. Avoid skids by anticipating lane changes, turns and curves. Steering in icy conditions requires smooth and careful movements. Abrupt movements break traction and can start a skid. If your vehicle starts to skid, steer into the direction of the slide.

4. Accelerate and decelerate slowly. Applying the gas slowly when pulling out of the driveway or from a stop sign is the best way to regain traction and avoid slipping or sliding. It also takes longer to slow down on icy roads. So at intersections, allow for long, slow and steady stops to avoid skids.

5. Do not use cruise control. When driving on a slippery surface, such as rain or ice, never use cruise control. You want to be able to respond immediately, if you start losing traction.

6. Use extra caution on bridges, ramps and overpasses. These areas are likely to freeze first and stay frozen during a winter storm.

7. While preventative measures go a long way to keep you safe on the road, unexpected weather or vehicle problems still happen. If an emergency should develop on the road, an emergency roadside kit with winter supplies is a valuable asset. Kits should include a cell phone and car charger; blankets; flashlight with extra batteries; a first-aid kit; drinking water; a small shovel; a sack of sand, cat litter or traction mats; windshield scraper and brush; battery booster cables; and emergency flares or reflectors.