Winter weather driving tips


According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, during the winter of 2015-16, there were 11,544 crashes on snow, ice or slush covered roadways on Ohio roads. Speed-related factors were reported as a cause in 68 percent of these crashes.

The U.S. Department of Transportation says, one good way to tell how bad things are on the road is by knowing “snow emergency” levels for Ohio.

LEVEL 1: Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow. Roads may also be icy. Motorists are urged to drive very cautiously.

LEVEL 2: Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow. Roads may also be very icy. Only those who feel it is necessary to drive should be out on the roads. Contact your employer to see if you should report to work. Motorists should use extreme caution.

LEVEL 3: All roadways are closed to non-emergency personnel. No one should be driving during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel or a personal emergency exists. All employees should contact their employer to see if they should report to work. Those traveling on the roads may subject themselves to arrest.

According to The Ohio Department of Transportation, “First is Worst,” especially on interstates and state-maintained highways, where speeds are faster and traffic volumes higher.

The faster you’re going, the longer it will take to stop. When accelerating on snow or ice, take it slow to avoid slipping and sliding.

OSHP also encourages drivers to prepare their vehicle for winter driving by ensuring that the battery, cooling system, tires, wipers, and defroster are all in working order.

Drivers should also prepare a winter car kit in case of a breakdown:

• Cell phone with car charger
• Road flares or reflectors
• Help or Call Police signs
• First aid kit
• Flashlight
• Blanket/Sleeping bag
• Small shovel
• Bottled water and energy foods
• Candles and matches
• Tow strap/chain

View our Traffic Map for real-time traffic alerts: