Just as weight restriction signs are posted in the Upper Peninsula during spring break-up, eleven European countries and three Canadian provinces post signs in the fall warning drivers that they must equip their cars with winter tires or risk a ticket.

By Bryon Ennis.

My 2010, all-wheel drive SUV usually performed well on snow-covered Upper Peninsula roads, and I credited this normally safe, sufficient traction to the four all-weather tires that came on the vehicle. However, I experienced two hair-raising episodes when, of its own accord and totally without warning, my SUV suddenly broke from its tracking and performed a 360-degree pirouette on packed, refrozen snow. Luckily, in both instances no cars were approaching from the opposite direction…

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