State Patrol: Don't Blame Snow For Crashes
MILWAUKEE - You’ve heard cops say in winter weather that drivers are going too fast for conditions.
So how do you know what the right speed is?
The State Patrol says no matter how icy the roads, no matter how slow you’re doing, you can’t blame the weather for slipping, sliding or crashing.
The winter conditions drivers fear most…
“I just hate the feeling of going out of control,” Kate Loehrer said.
Sliding on black ice in heavy traffic, spinning on a snow covered street, changing lanes against your will with no power to steer.
TODAY’S TMJ4’s Tom Murray: “Too fast for the conditions, what does that mean to you?”
“That means everybody’s doing what they normally do and they shouldn’t be,” Don Hoeppner said.
The State Patrol’s definition is surprisingly strict.
“We are citing people who go in the ditches. There’s only one reason for it. You’re going too fast for conditions,” Wisconsin State Patrol Trooper Kristian Perales said.
Trooper Perales says even during winter’s worst you’re responsible for your car’s actions. He says slow to the point where you could slam on the brakes and not skid, stick to the driest driving lane and widen your following distance.
“For average conditions on a clear dry road, at least three seconds between each car. You might want to extend that 7, 8, 9 seconds,” Trooper Perales said.
No one’s paying closer attention to this advice than TODAY’S TMJ4’s Tom Murray. He lost control of his SUV Sunday on icy I-94 in Michigan and ended up tipped over in a ditch.
Tom walked away unharmed, and from now you’ll find him in the slow lanes.
The State Patrol says you should think about what would happen if you slammed on your brakes. If the answer is anything other than stopping safely, you're going too fast.