Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Driving Safely During Wintry Conditions

The snow is currently falling, the roads are getting slick, and the Overland Park Police Department is seeing an increase in the number of accident reports this morning. In the last hour, we’ve take fifteen reports with the majority of them occurring along the I-435 corridor. PLEASE BE CAREFUL!
 With this in mind, The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) wants to pass along these important winter driving tips as you navigate the roadways this morning.
Driver Safety Tips

Please remind DRIVERS if they must travel about to: 
1.       Take it SLOW!
2.     Allow plenty of extra drive time.
3.      Watch for icy/slick spots on the roadway; don’t assume that if the pavement looks clear, that it is.
4.     Buckle up every passenger, every time.
5.      If they get stranded, to stay with their vehicle and call *47 on a state highway/interstate route (any highway that begins with I-, K-, and US-), *KTA on the Kansas Turnpike, or #911 at anytime.

For travel throughout the morning commutes, drivers should use caution, allow plenty of driving time, buckle up (every passenger, every time) and be sure to turn on their headlights, and turn off their cruise control.  Drivers should also provide for a safe distance or cushion between themselves and vehicles ahead of them. 

We also want to remind drivers to stay a safe distance back from KDOT snow plows, and if drivers should pass the snow plows, to be extra careful and allow plenty of room as the trucks do travel slower than surrounding traffic.

Updated Road Conditions (via phone or online 24/7)
Updated Kansas road conditions are at your fingertips.  KanDrive is the new online travel info portal, www.KanDrive.org, that displays information from KDOT’s traveler information technology, including highway cameras, dynamic message signs, traffic management centers and 511 phone, online and mobile (http://511mm.ksdot.org).  Snapshots from more than 30 closed-circuit cameras along I-70 between Topeka and Colorado and along other highways in the state, as well as camera views from the KC Scout system are available through the new online site, so users can see the roadway conditions.

Travelers can also obtain updated road conditions simply by calling 511 from any phone (landline or cellular), or by clicking on the following link:  http//511.ksdot.org, drivers can obtain updated all of Kansas road conditions at anytime, day or night. 

Additional weather-related information can be found online at http://www.ksdot.org/offTransInfo/511Info/511traffictravel.asp.  This KDOT web site link includes informational brochures on 511 Winter Storm Survival, Managing Snow and Ice on Kansas Highways, and Safe Winter Driving Tips.  Drivers…“If the weather is bad, remember with ICE AND SNOW, Take it Slow, or just don’t go.”