LOGAN — Early morning snow Monday caused numerous vehicle accidents, prompting Utah Highway Patrol troopers to remind drivers to be cautious behind the wheel. The accidents ranged from slide-offs to rollovers, most causing only minor damage and injuries.
UHP Sgt. Cade Brenchley said, most importantly, drivers need to slow down and keep a safe distance between them and other drivers.
“You are going to have to leave earlier if you are wanting to get somewhere or just plan on being late,” said Brenchley. “Give yourself plenty of time, slow down and maintain a good following distance. We have had a couple people slide into other cars who were stopped at stoplights or whatever.”
Utah law states drivers must keep a two-second following distance but during winter conditions, troopers suggest adding an extra second for each road hazard like snow and nighttime driving.
Brenchley recommends maintaining your vehicle during the winter is also important and making sure you have good tires.
“We live in a mountain valley and summer tires are not going to cut it up here, even all-seasons (tires). Going up Sardine Canyon and some of these canyons and going up hills, even all-seasons (tires) aren’t going to cut it all the time.”
Winter storms can also limit your visibility and Brenchley said a lot of motorists get into trouble because they don’t clean the snow off their vehicle before leaving.
“People scrapping a swipe off their windshield and maybe off their driver-side door. Their headlights and taillights are covered. Other people can’t see you. Not to mention, you can’t see everything out your windows.”
Many drivers don’t realize they can be pulled over and cited for poor visibility out of their windows.
This time of year is dangerous for troopers and other emergency vehicles who are called to accidents. That is why Brenchley asks motorists to pay attention while driving and give emergency crews plenty of space if they drive up on a crash.
“Please slow down and move over. Give them plenty of room. Tow-trucks especially, their drivers are a lot of time out of their vehicle loading up cars and they need space.”
The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning through Tuesday with a chance of snow continuing through Thursday night.
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