Drivers stock up with winter gear
Drivers are already stocking up with cold weather gear in preparation for winter.

Motor and leisure retailer Halfords has said memories of bitter winters in 2009 and 2010 have prompted many drivers to plan ahead.

The firm has found almost six in ten drivers are planning to stock up on winter products, and three per cent of car owners, almost one million, now confess to owning winter tyres.

A quarter said they always carry a blanket and five per cent have an in-car charger to keep the mobile topped up. One in six have a bottle of water or a bar of chocolate in the glove compartment.

Halfords has responded by rushing out more of their winter lines early. Its stores are getting extra supplies of salt, de-icer, antifreeze, snow socks, traction tracks and snow and ice shoe-grips.

Halfords Autocentres marketing director Rory Carling said: "The unpredictability of winter weather means that drivers should really plan for the worst rather than then hope for the best.

"We have already begun receiving bookings for our Winter Check service from a small number of forward thinking customers, but last year's relatively mild winter may have lulled some people into a false sense of security."

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