The Tristate may experience its first dusting to a blanket of snow for the season later Friday night and into Saturday morning. Not only does snow and ice cause travel issues but now the influx of temperatures hold an area of concern for emergency responders. It’s still too early to provide details on how much or how little snow will fall but it’s a great time to remind motorists of a few important tips as we transition into winter driving mode.
“We are asking drivers to be prepared to meet the challenges of driving in adverse weather conditions,” says KSP Post 16 spokesman Trooper Corey King. “Plan ahead; make sure everyone in the vehicle is properly restrained and ensure your vehicle is maintained to handle not only the road conditions but the frigid temperatures as well.” “Our troopers will be continuously monitoring all major corridors looking for stranded motorists,” King added.
The best advice is to avoid unnecessary travel when winter weather is in your area. However; if you do have to venture out, here are a few reminders:
– Know the conditions before departure – In Kentucky, visit GoKY.ky.gov or dial 511 to see the reported conditions of your intended travel routes. Also, monitor your local media outlets and radio. Please do not call 911 to inquire about road conditions. You may also download the Kentucky State Police free mobile phone app which is available at Apple and Google Play Stores.
– Clear all windows and mirrors – having unobstructed vision is vital for time/distance management and to avoid having a collision.
– Leave early – allow more travel time; expect some delays as well as temporary road closures. Anticipate normal travel time to be up to five times longer (depending).
– Increase distance between vehicles – it takes significantly longer to stop on snow and ice cover roadways.
– Use extreme caution on bridges and over passes – also peaks and valleys as well as shady areas typically hold spots of black ice.
– Do not use cruise control (or exhaust engine brakes for trucks) – cruise control can cause the vehicle’s wheels to continue turning on a slick surface, hence causing the vehicle to lose control.
– Approach intersections with great care – other drivers not paying attention will slide through red lights.
– Signal all lane changes and turning movements – for other motorist to react to your anticipated actions.
– Have a full tank of fuel – In the event of a collision or being stranded, it will take emergency personal longer response times. With frigid temperatures, having enough fuel to keep warm is paramount! Also, make sure your exhaust tail pipe is clear and free of any obstructions like snow or debris. This allows carbon monoxide to properly exit your vehicle and not back into your vehicles cabin.
– Have a vehicle cell phone charger and a blanket. – It is also a good idea to have a working flashlight, jumper cables and non-perishable food items including water inside your vehicle as well.
– Notify a family member or friend of your travel plans and intended travel routes.- In the event you wreck or become stranded, law enforcement can retrace your intended travel path to save time and to achieve the best and fastest possible outcome.
COLLISION/SLIDE OFF INFORMATION:
– Be patient – bad weather also limits the capabilities of law enforcement officers and other emergency services. Also, keep in mind we will be experiencing a high volume of requests for service.
– Attempt to move your vehicle out of the roadway if you are involved in a minor, non-injury traffic collision; especially if you are in a dangerous area such as a curve or blinding hill.
– If your vehicle is stranded or wrecked but not in the roadway, attempts to recover your vehicle will have to wait until conditions improve for safety considerations.
Furthermore, Kentucky’s Move Over Law states motorists MUST change lanes away from the emergency or utility vehicle if it can be done so SAFELY. If it’s not possible to move away from the emergency vehicle, motorists must SLOW DOWN and proceed with caution.
Vehicles included in the “Move Over” law are:
• Police vehicles
• Fire trucks and rescue equipment
• Highway incident-response vehicles
• Highway work vehicles-including snow plows
• Vehicle recovery equipment (tow trucks)
Citizens can contribute to highway safety by calling KSP toll-free at: (1-800-222-5555). Citizens can call to confidentially report impaired drivers or any criminal activity. You can also download the free KSP mobile phone app. The app provides quick, direct access to KSP including weather, road and traffic information as well as text, voice and photo tip capabilities to report criminal behavior. The app is available for iPhone, iPad and Android applications and can be easily downloaded free of charge through Apple and Google Play stores.