Jul 28, 2014

Harsh Weather, Driving Conditions on the Way

Some snow and freezing rain are expected to hit the area overnight.

Harsh Weather, Driving Conditions on the Way

Winter may finally make a bit of an appearance in Westwood tonight, as the National Weather Service is reporting an 80 percent chance of rain and snow overnight Wednesday into Thursday before 4 a.m.

NWS has also issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook overnight, as sleet and freezing rain may occur.

Meanwhile, the Massachusetts State Police are asking that motorists drive slowly throughout the morning commute on Thursday as weather conditions worsen.

Specifically, State Police have issued the following safety tips for drivers during the harsh winter weather:

  • Be mindful that wet, icy and snow-covered roads require increased stopping time. Motorists are advised to drive at speeds appropriate to the weather conditions, significantly slower than they would drive on dry roads, and to keep greater distance than normal between their cars and the cars in front of them. The rule of thumb for dry weather – one car length for every 10 miles per hour of speed -- should be increased in inclement weather.
  • Motorists should leave extra time to get to their destination, especially during tomorrow morning’s commute.
  • In heavy rains, water tends to pool in the left lanes of highways. Motorists are reminded that:
    • The left lane of multi-lane highways is a passing lane, not a high-speed travel lane, and thus sustained travel in the left lane is prohibited.
    • Pooled water in the left lane can be a hazard to vehicles driving at high speeds.
  • Motorists should not attempt to drive through flooded sections of road. Standing water can be deeper than it appears, and cars can easily become stranded.
  • Drivers are reminded that the have to adequately clear snow from their windshields and windows; hood, roof, and trunk; and lights and license plates. Failure to do so puts drivers and other motorists at risk and is considered impeded operation.
  • Proceed with caution through intersections where snow banks limit visibility. Please remember that snow banks may hide pedestrians and oncoming vehicles from sight, and force pedestrians to walk along the edge of the road.
  • Motorists are reminded to wear seatbelts, and to avoid distractions such as playing with the radio, using electronic devices, or wearing headphones.
  • Motorists should carry a charged cell phone at all times. Anyone who gets in trouble on the roads is reminded to call 9-1-1 on a cell phone to immediately be connected to a State Police Communications Section.

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