Winter Weather Driving

Winter driving can be extremely hazardous at time, due to poor road conditions or reduced visibilities from heavy or blowing snow.  During these times, travel is difficult if not dangerous, and often not recommended.  However, many people still venture outdoors not knowing what they will encounter.  This is why being properly prepared is a must as it may save your life, and the lives of those traveling with you.

Many winter deaths can be attributed to people becoming stranded and venturing away from their vehicle.  The longer people are out in the elements, the more likely they will be come disoriented and die due to exposure.  To avoid this, you should stay inside your vehicle and wait for help.  Display a signal, such as tying bright cloth to your antenna to alert someone that you are in trouble, and also to aid rescuers.  Occasionally run your engine to provide heat, but be sure to open a window slightly to allow proper ventilation in side the vehicle.  Be sure to clear the exhaust pipe of snow to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.  

Road condition reports:

Things to remember when traveling this winter season:

  1. Listen to the forecast before departing and postpone travel if inclement weather is occurring or expected.
  2. Avoid traveling alone.  Inform others of your timetable and planned routes.
  3. Keep your gas tank near full.
  4. Adjust your speed to the conditions and increase following distances.  Bridges and overpasses can be more slippery than other parts of the road.
  5. Carry a winter survival kit in your vehicle at all times!!

Winter Survival Kit

The following items should be included in your winter weather survival kit:

  • Shovel
  • First aid kit
  • Non-perishable food, such as granola bars and peanuts.
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Candles and matches
  • Extra clothing, sleeping bags or blankets for everyone
  • Tire Chains
  • Battery-operated radio with batteries
  • Empty coffee can to be used to burn the candles or to melt snow for water.
  • Booster cables
  • Cell phone with fully charged batteries is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.