I was doing an online practice knowledge quiz for my driver’s test today, and this was one of their questions:

What should you do if you get stuck or stranded in the snow?

a) Immediately look for help
b) Run your engine as needed to provide warmth
c) Run your vehicle engine for approximately 5 minutes every hour to avoid effects of carbon monoxide
d) All answers are correct

…Eh?

Well, this wasn’t something I remembered reading about in the driver’s handbook, but common sense told me that (b) was correct. After all, leaving your car for help in the middle of a snowstorm will most likely put you into more danger, while running your car to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning is just ridiculous. And if (a) and (c) are incorrect, then (d) must be, too.

So I selected (b). The webpage, with bold, red letters, told me “INCORRECT; Correct answer is (c).”

What?! How does that even make sense?

I did a quick Google search, and of course, the quiz was misinforming me. I’m going to be generous (because I do appreciate the fact that they took the time to make practice quizzes for us future drivers), and say that they misread the following information at Canada’s National Occupation Health & Safety Resource:

Run the car engine occasionally (about 10 minutes every hour) to provide heat (and to conserve fuel). Ensure that the tail exhaust pipe is free of snow and keep the window opened slightly (on the side shielded from the wind) to prevent the build up of carbon monoxide when the engine is running.

Lesson learnt today: Do not trust whatever unofficial practice quizzes say, EVER. Use their services with caution, and make sure you study directly from the official material first (and right before your test too, to prevent wrong information from clouding your memory).

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