SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany --
Residents of Spangdahlem who have had the pleasure of being from, or living, in the southern states of America may not be aware of this epidemic, but winter is here. Don’t fret-some Saber professionals have a few ways to help prepare Airmen for the frigid season.
U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Lacey Crowley, 52nd Fighter Wing Saber Driving Course instructor, teaches a driving course focused on safe driving practices in the winter. The cars used throughout the course come equipped with rear caster wheels which produces the same effect of a vehicle spinning out on snow and ice.
“This course was created to create a safer community,” said Crowley. “We offer it so that people can practice driving in a safe environment and learn to keep control of their car when they encounter the hazards of driving in bad weather.”
The Saber Driving Course is three hours long in its entirety, consisting of one hour in the classroom and two hours in the vehicle learning control tips and procedures.
“I definitely feel like I learned a lot from the driving course,” said U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Corey Wiggins, 52nd Fighter Wing Saber Driving Course student. “A big lesson I learned is be conscious of my speed because 5 km/h can be the difference between a spinout and having full control of the vehicle.”
Some points the course hits on are managing speed, how to use the steering wheel and brakes to keep control of the vehicle, recognizing different weather conditions including black ice, and winterizing your vehicle.
“Hitting the brakes is not the right decision when you lose control of the car,” said Wiggins. “Remove your foot from the brake and use the steering wheel to guide the vehicle in the direction you want it to go until the car slows down enough for you to take control again. This is something I was shocked to hear, but when I tried it during the course it surprised me and worked well.”
Those interested in the course can talk to their unit safety representative, stop by the safety office with their U.S. Forces Certificate of License (USEUR), or call 452-SAFE to get signed up.