Written by Meteorologist Jennifer Zeppelin

With little snowfall over parts of the state this snow season our driving skills might be a little rusty. Now that a major arctic system is headed our way this weekend it’s probably a good time to review winter travel safety tips. The National Weather Service has put together some great tips to consider before you hit those icy, snow packed roadways.

Prepare before you leave.

Make sure you have adequate tires, chains, a tow rope, sand or cat litter for traction…also consider putting a shovel, tool kit, windshield scraper, brush and battery cables in your car.

More must items include a first aid kit, flashlight, extra batteries, blankets, extra clothing, candle, water‑proof matches and high calorie packaged food.

Monitor weather and road conditions before departing:

NOAA Weather Radio

Colorado Department of Transportation ( www.cotrip.org or by dialing 511 or toll free 1-877-315-7623.)

When it comes to driving these are some great tips to keep in mind:

– Slow down
– Allow extra braking distance
– Do not tailgate

Watch out for changing road conditions:

Bridges and overpasses become icy first, snow and blowing snow can produce reduced visibility, roads may look clear but in the wintertime may be coated with a thin layer of ice, known as black ice. 

If you become stranded:

Stay with your vehicle, run the motor every hour for about ten minutes to maintain warmth. Make sure the exhaust pipe is not blocked and keep windows open a little to prevent the buildup of carbon monoxide. Take turns sleeping and exercise periodically by moving arms, legs, toes and finger.


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