Keep off the roads


This week’s adverse weather conditions kept law enforcement, emergency crews and tow-truck drivers responding across the region to numerous accidents. Area drivers were quickly reminded of the wrath of winter. It seems that every year, the early storms of the season are associated with numerous accidents when motorists find themselves unfamiliar with maneuvering winter driving conditions.

Thankfully, there were no fatalities in the local accidents that resulted from winter rearing its head. In the U.S. each year, approximately 7,000 roadway deaths and 450,000 injuries are associated with poor weather-related driving conditions.

Besides driving too fast for weather conditions, some of the leading causes of fatal roadway crashes are failure to keep in the proper lane or running off the road; driving under the influence; failure to yield the right of way; distracted driving; operating in an erratic or reckless manner; and failure to obey traffic signs and signals.

When you add talking on the phone and texting to the mix, the risk for accidents and deaths increases greatly.

Winter can bring a combination of slush, ice, snow and lower temperatures to our already shorter daylight hours, creating hazardous driving conditions.

Wintertime is time to slow down and allow for extra time to get to your destination. It is also a good time to share AAA Motor Club’s refresher on driving in snow and ice:

The full version of this story is available in the print edition and e-edition of the Pagosa Springs SUN. Subscribe today by calling (970)264-2100 or click here.