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Drive safe during forecasted Thanksgiving storm

11/26/2013, 3 p.m.
Virginia State Police Troopers will be working throughout this storm and through the holiday weekend with increased patrols and traffic ...
Virginia State Police Troopers will be working throughout the storm.

As families across the nation prepare to travel this Thanksgiving Holiday, a powerful storm is also making its way across the country. The storm is predicted to arrive here in Virginia late Tuesday into Wednesday as families will be departing to visit friends and family.

Combined with the increase in motorists on Virginia’s roadways along with the decrease in favorable travel conditions due to weather, the Virginia State Police want to remind motorists to make safe driving a top priority so you arrive to your destination alive.

“Ten lives have already been lost due to weather related incidents across the nation and more lives could be lost if motorists do not slow down and drive cautiously,” says Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “We know traveling during the holidays is stressful enough but when inclement weather is added into the mix it does not make it any easier. We urge motorists to plan ahead, slow down and if possible delay your travel plans.”

Virginia State Police Troopers will be working throughout this storm and through the holiday weekend with increased patrols and traffic enforcement efforts in order to prevent traffic deaths and injuries as part of the state police’s participation in Operation C.A.R.E (Combined Accident Reduction Effort. This national program is designed to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by speeding, impaired driving and failure to use occupant restraints.

With the increase of emergency personnel and the likelihood of an increase in weather related motor vehicle crashes, motorists are also reminded of Virginia’s “Move Over” law. The law is intended to protect first responders as they help protect you year-round. The law also protects maintenance vehicles and tow trucks equipped with flashing amber lights.

Driving Tips in Inclement Weather

  • State law requires headlights to be on when windshield wipers are in active use

  • Completely clear all windows and head/taillights of snow/ice before traveling

  • Add extra time to reach travel destination

  • Slow your speed for road conditions

  • Increase driving distances between vehicles for increased stopping distance

  • Buckle up and don’t drive distracted

  • If your vehicle begins to hydroplane steer your vehicle in the direction you want your vehicle to go

  • Brake and accelerate lightly

  • Call 511 for road conditions or click on http://www.511virginia.org – not 911 or #77, as these are for emergency calls only