Last week’s snow storm was no joke! It left hundreds of passenger vehicles in Kentucky stuck on the roads for over 12 hours. This prompted Gov. Steve Beshear to declare a state of emergency on Thursday, March 5, 2015. As much as 23 inches of snow fell, leaving vehicles, including tractor-trailers, on a standstill and passengers stuck overnight with no food and water. The National Guard was deployed to help with the rescue operations and evacuate motorists to warm shelters.
Stay warm and prepared
In data compiled by icyroadsafety.com, it was found that an average of 467 people died per year due to icy roads in the United States. At least 477 were killed during the 2008-2009 winter season, and at least 458 during the 2009-2010 winter season. Winter storms can last for a few hours to several days. It is best to be prepared to stay safe.
Large winter storms can affect several states simultaneously. The extremely low temperature, apart from the snow, is sometimes accompanied by strong winds and freezing rain. This can be a fatal combination. With this in mind, it’s always a good idea to bring extra water and food with you when you’re traveling. This is especially true when the weather is extreme and the roads shut down leaving you stuck. Also, make sure that you have warm socks, blankets and other items to help you stay warm.
Rescue operations may take longer due to the road conditions, so try to protect yourself from the cold at all cost while waiting. Keep a close eye on vulnerable body parts such as toes and earlobes. They are more susceptible to frostbite. Please layer up. Also, before you leave your house, take time to clear off your car of snow and ice.
It’s also a must to drive slowly and double the distance you usually maintain from the car in front of you. You need to put down your cell phone, too! It’s dangerous and illegal to text and drive. When weather is as bad as it was last Wednesday and Thursday, you have to stay focused on the road and on your surroundings.
What if I get stuck?
If you do get stuck, here are some things you can do:
- Not run your car constantly. This could build up carbon monoxide in your car, especially if your tail pipe is blocked with snow, which is deadly. Instead, run your car for around 15 minutes every hour and roll down a window slightly if possible.
- Call for help.
- Try to stay inside your car until help arrives.
If you insist on getting out, chances are, you’ll have trouble finding your way back, and locating your car could be difficult due to thick snow and poor visibility.
As a Kentucky Accident Attorney, I suggest staying at home during extreme weather conditions. Even if you’re able to reach your destination safely, there is never a guarantee that your travel back home will be as smooth-sailing. However, if you really have to set out, remember the tips we’ve shared above and be careful.