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KSP Reminds Drivers to Use Caution During Winter Weather

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Kentuckians are being dealt a wintery weather blast today and KSP is asking motorists to be aware that weather conditions may change rapidly over the next few hours.

"Winter weather provides new challenges and responsibilities to the public and the Kentucky State Police," says KSP spokesman Sgt. Michael Webb.

"We ask drivers to be prepared to meet the challenges of the upcoming winter driving season. Plan ahead, be sure everyone in the vehicle is properly restrained, drive defensively and ensure their vehicle is properly maintained to handle the effects of cold temperatures,” added Webb.

KSP reports that slippery roads were the contributing factor in 26,427 crashes in 2014.

Here are a few simple steps to help keep you on the road and less stressed:

•Avoid travel unless necessary when winter weather is in your area.

•Slow down.

•Always wear your seat belt.

Driving Considerations

•Leave early – allow more travel time; expect delays.

•Increase distance between vehicles – it takes significantly longer to stop on snow covered or icy roadways.

•Clear all windows on your vehicle prior to travel – having unobstructed vision is vital to avoid running off of the road or having a collision.

•Turn on your vehicle’s headlamps. Remove any dirt, mud or snow.

•Use caution on bridges and overpasses as they are susceptible to freezing before roadways.

•Avoid using cruise control – cruise can cause the vehicle’s wheels to continue turning on a slippery surface when speed needs to be decreased.

Be Prepared

•Ensure your vehicle has a full tank of gas in the event you are stranded for an extended period of time.

•Charge your cellular phone prior to departure.

•Take a blanket.

•Notify a family member or a friend of your travel plans prior to departure – if your travel is interrupted, someone will know.

Collision Information

•Be patient – bad weather also limits the capabilities of law enforcement officers and emergency crews and increases response time. Also, keep in mind that they will be experiencing a high volume of requests for service.

•Attempt to move your vehicle out of the roadway if you are involved in a minor, non-injury traffic collision; especially if you are in a dangerous area such as a curve or a blind hill.

•If your vehicle is stranded or wrecked but not in the roadway, attempts to recover your vehicle will have to wait until conditions improve for safety considerations.

KSP is requesting travelers to observe for potentially stranded motorists. If you see or suspect that someone is stranded, please call 911 or contact the Kentucky State Police at: 1-800-222-5555.

(story provided by Kentucky State Police)

Paul Hitchcock earned his Masters in Communications from Morehead State University and Bachelors in Radio-TV/Psychology from Georgetown College. A veteran broadcaster for more than 40 years and an avid fan of blues, jazz and American roots music. Hitchcock has been with WMKY since 1986 and was named General Manager in 2003. He currently hosts "Muddy Bottom Blues" (Fri., 8pm-9pm), "Nothin' But The Blues" (Sat., 8pm-12am), "Sunday Night Jazz Showcase" and "Live From The Jazz Lounge" (Sun., 8pm-9pm) and "The Golden Age of Radio" (Sun., 2pm-3pm). He also serves as producer for "A Time For Tales" and "The Reader's Notebook."