Missourians may see their first widespread winter event this week, as accumulating snow and ice are forecast for much of the state on Thursday and Friday.
The Missouri Department of Transportation is carefully monitoring weather forecasts and preparing to plow and treat state routes as needed.
Travelers should also take their own precautions, as the first bout of snow or ice means motorists’ winter driving skills may be a bit rusty.
Remember that even light precipitation can cause roads to become slick with ice or snow. While MoDOT works hard to treat and plow Missouri highways when winter weather hits, it’s important to allow extra time for travel and to check road conditions before you head out. Remember the following tips when driving in inclement weather:
- Slow down.
- Steer and brake gently.
- Accelerate slowly at intersections.
- Allow extra space between your vehicle and the one ahead of you.
- Stay back 100 feet from snow plows that may be spreading salt. Avoid passing snow plows, even when on a multi-lane road.
- Be aware that bridges and overpasses generally experience freezing conditions first.
One of the best ways to prepare for winter travel is to check road conditions before you go. MoDOT’s Traveler Information Map, at www.modot.org, provides current road conditions for Missouri’s interstates and major highways. Conditions for these routes are color coded to give you the information you need at a glance.
For smartphone and tablet users, the Traveler Information App brings the same information to mobile devices. The app is available for free from the iPhone and Android app stores by searching for “MoDOT.”
MoDOT also provides road conditions information through its Customer Service Center. Dial 888-ASK-MODOT (888-275-6636) to speak to one of the representatives. They are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.