It's finally starting to feel like winter here in Washington. While winter brings Christmas and other joyous holidays, it also means colder weather and tough driving conditions. You may have some routines that get you through the tricky winter commute that may actually be illegal.

Photo by Nicolas J Leclercq on Unsplash
Photo by Nicolas J Leclercq on Unsplash
loading...

Say you're getting ready for work in the morning. It's cold; blistering cold. You can imagine how cold your car is going to be. You shudder at the thought of your hands gripping the ice-cold steering wheel. You decide to start your car up and leave it running while you go back inside and drink a warm cup of coffee. Just like that, you've broken the law. RCW 46.61.600 clearly states that you cannot leave your car without "stopping the engine, locking the ignition, [and] removing the key." As for remote start systems, that's a different story.

Let's picture another scenario. You're running late for work and fresh snow has befallen your vehicle. If you took the time to completely clear the snow off your car, you risk being late. You swipe the snow off your windshield and windows and call it good. Bam, you're in legal hot water again. In one extreme case last week, a driver was cited for negligent driving in the second degree and was popped with a fine of over $500!

Photo by Michael on Unsplash
Photo by Michael on Unsplash
loading...

Let's look at one last situation. You've been using studded tires through the winter but you leave them on your car well into the spring. The Washington State Department of Transportation says you need to have those switched out by March 31, as studded tires wreak havoc on Washington streets and highways, upwards of $20 million or more each year in damages.

Let's do our best to drive safely and be kind to other drivers this winter.

LOOK: The most extreme temperatures in the history of every state

Stacker consulted 2021 data from the NOAA's State Climate Extremes Committee (SCEC) to illustrate the hottest and coldest temperatures ever recorded in each state. Each slide also reveals the all-time highest 24-hour precipitation record and all-time highest 24-hour snowfall.

Keep reading to find out individual state records in alphabetical order.

More From 92.9 The Bull