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State police offer winter driving tips


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COLUMBUS, Ind. — During the next two days, snow and high wind speeds are being predicted. This combination can cause visibility to be reduced and road conditions to change quickly. The Indiana State Police offer motorists the following tips.

Be prepared:

· Before traveling, check the forecast and let someone know your travel route.

· Keep your gas tank at least half-full.

· Carry a winter driving kit that should include blankets, flashlight, extra batteries, a brightly colored cloth, sand (or cat litter), shovel, candle, matches, non-perishable high calorie food, first aid kit, and jumper cables.

· Have a cell phone and charger cord available.

· Slow down on snow/ice covered roads.

· Allow extra time to arrive at your destination.

· Clear all vehicle windows of ice and snow. Remove snow from hood, roof, and lights.

· Use extra caution when driving across bridges, underpasses, shaded areas and intersections where ice is slow to melt.

· Avoid abrupt stops and starts. Slow down gradually.

Should you become stranded:

· Don’t leave your car. It’s the best protection you have.

· Tie a brightly colored cloth to your antenna.

· Roll down your window a small amount to allow fresh air in your vehicle.

· Keep the exhaust pipe free of blockage to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.

· Don’t panic. An idling car uses approximately one gallon of gas per hour.

For Indiana road conditions call 1- 800-261-7623, or visit the Indiana Department of Transportation website at www.trafficwise.in.gov. Please do not call dispatch centers for road conditions. Telecommunications operators can be extremely busy dispatching equipment and personnel to motorists requiring emergency assistance.

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