SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Each year, 24 percent of weather-related vehicle crashes occur on snowy, slushy or icy pavement, according to the Federal Highway Administration. There are ways you can help prevent yourself from becoming part of that statistic.

You can prep your car with the essentials: Snow brush, wiper fluid, and a tank of gas. But when you hit the road, driving instructors say you can’t be too confident, even if you’re a born and bred Northeasterner.

Sometimes, it’s worth going back to the basics of driving school.

NEWS10 took a lesson from Steven Darling of Easy Method Driving School in Schenectady ahead of the anticipated messy road conditions Wednesday.

“We can put up a fight, but at the end of the day, mama gets her way,” Darling said, “and Mother Nature has to be respected. A lot of times, we really just forget that. We forget because we’re comfortable. We’re in a car, we’re warm, the environment in here is insulated, and it’s very comfortable.”

When snow gets pushed to the sides of the road amid cleanup efforts, and when the lines become obscured and difficult to see, drivers may have to pull maneuvers to make it around. Darling said the lines on the road and proper lanes are really just guides, and when you’re running out of room, your main concern should be to avoid hitting anyone or anything.

Darling explained that speed is often a major factor in crashes in snowy conditions. He recommends utilizing low gear to keep your speed under control.