HST is prepared… winter is coming
The days are becoming shorter, temperatures drop below zero and winter is coming… All of Europe is becoming in the winter mood. There is a lot of speculation: will we have a mild winter, or is a real horror winter awaiting? One thing is for sure: whatever the weather will be, HST Groep is ready for it.
German-speaking and Scandinavian countries
Although it has been quite a while since there was a lot of snow, our drivers still drive regularly through harsh conditions. Especially in Germany, Switserland, Sweden and Norway, our drivers encounter a lot of snow. To competently deal with bad weather, good preparation is very important. At HST, we believe it’s important that all shipments – despite bad weather – arrive in good order at the place of destination. A well-prepared driver who knows what to do is obviously the most important thing.
Winter tires, snow chains and ice chains
Although it is in the Netherlands not obligated to have winter tires on a truck and it is often not even allowed to drive with snow or ice chains, in some European countries this is very different.
Every country has its own rules regarding the obligation of winter tires. In a number of European countries, including the Netherlands, in winter conditions winter tires are only recommended. In other countries such as France, Switserland and Italy, winter tires are mandatory only in certain areas. The mandatory use is in the area indicated by signs. In some countries, including Germany, Austria, Norway and Sweden, winter tires are mandatory everywhere during a specific period of time. What this period is, varies per country. Some countries are very strict; winter tires are always obligated after a certain date. For example in Norway, as of November 15, every truck needs to be equipped with winter tires. In other countries the time of obligated equipment are more open to interpretation. For instance in Germany are winter tires mandatory only at “winter conditions”.
Even though winter tires are by no means obligated everywhere, HST doesn’t take risks. Between mid-October and early November, our cars are all equipped with winter tires. “Better safe than sorry”.
Within the Netherlands, you wouldn’t see cars with snow chains very often, since these are only permitted in exceptional situations. In many European countries, the driver is however required to have snow chains on board at least. These chains are often only permitted on snowy and/or ice-covered roads, as these chains are not good for the road. Snow chains are usually required in, for example, snowy mountain passes and in areas where it is indicated by traffic signs. Therefore, it is important that the driver knows how the chains should place the chains around the truck tires.
HST offers a yearly course to her drivers about the placement of snow chains. When a driver encounters snow or ice, he can quickly put the snow chains in place and safely continue his journey.
For the coldest, most snowy areas and slipperiest roads, snow chains are not always conclusive. Trucks with studded tires are prohibited in a lot of countries. In such a case, ice chains can be a good alternative, because they are rougher and have more grip than snow chains. Drivers who drive on these slippery roads, for example in the north of Norway, therefore always have ice chains in their truck. The placing of ice chains is basically equal to placing snow chains.
After everything, it should be emphasized that the safety of our drivers always comes first, even so in winter conditions. When it doesn’t seem safe to continue the journey, the driver will park his truck and wait until it is once again responsible to carry on and to continue driving.
Are you looking for a reliable carrier for pallet or packages transport to European countries with winter conditions? Request a free quotation. HST drives with own drivers and own equipment to Denmark, Germany, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. In addition, we facilitate transport to every other European country.