Winter has arrived early in Ohio, as well as most of the country. Although winter does not officially begin until December 21st, ice and show have already arrived resulting in many Ohio auto accidents throughout the Dayton, Cincinnati and Cleveland areas.
Early snowfall in November led to several accidents in the Akron area, including an accident involving a tractor-trailer slipping on icy roads on I-76.
In December, two teens driving in Cincinnati collided with a snow plow, injuring both teens. The snow plow hit the teens’ car after the snow plow proceeded through the stop sign without yielding the right-of-way to the vehicle. Both teens are expected to make a full recovery.
Freezing roads from early December led to several Dayton-area crashes, including a vehicle crash on Ohio 41, which resulted in no injuries, and several slide-off crashes on Interstate 675. (November 2013, http://www.ohio.com/news/slippery-roads-lead-to-multiple-crashes-several-delays-across-region-1.444195) (December 2013, http://www.wcpo.com/news/local-news/hamilton-county/cincinnati/westwood/police-at-least-1-seriously-hurt-after-snowplow-crashes-into-car-on-daytona-avenue-in-westwood ) (December, 2013 http://www.daytondailynews.com/news/news/local/slick-roads-lead-crashes-across-region/ncGh9/)
Ohio residents are no stranger to winter driving, but this year, icy road conditions may be worse than ever before. Keep safe while driving this year by following these safe winter driving tips outlined by the Ohio Department of Public Safety and the Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness (OCSWA):
- Pack a winter safety kit for your car, containing items such as energy bars, bottled water, flares, a warm blanket, cell-phone charger, and emergency weather radio. These items will be helpful in case you get stranded along a snowy road.
- Always pay attention to weather conditions before setting out. If ice and snow are expected, make sure you have enough time to get to your destination safely.
- Front-wheel drive vehicles are safer to drive on icy roads. Snow chains or snow tires are also recommended. Check with your local city regulations to see if snow chains are allowed.
- Since 2010, to ORC 4513.03 code requires that vehicle lights are on when windshield wipers are on. Failure to do so is a secondary offence and fines start at $100.
- Give yourself extra space and time for stopping at traffic lights and other stops to avoid colliding with other vehicles on the road.
- Pump brakes gently to come to a safe stop on icy roads.
- Watch out for ice on bridges and overpasses. Bridges and overpasses are more likely to ice over than other roads.
- Keep your gas tank half-full to avoid freezing the fuel lines, and switch to a lower-grade oil to keep your engine warm.
These guidelines will help you stay safe and avoid crashes and injuries as you drive during what looks like the start of a long, cold winter. (December 2013, http://www.weathersafety.ohio.gov/wintervehiclesafetytips.aspx)