The Missouri State Highway Patrol is reporting a surge in the number of accidents due to weather. 

The Missouri State Highway Patrol is concerned by the increase of traffic accidents this month as inclement weather hit the state.

Preliminary statistics indicate troopers investigated 1,054 crashes during a two-day period Feb. 4-5. Those accidents result in 96 injuries and two fatalities. Additionally, troopers answered 3,045 calls for assistance during those same two days. The calls included vehicles breaking down, sliding off the roadway or vehicles being left on the side of the road impeding snow removal.

“It is dangerously cold outside, and winter isn’t finished with Missouri quite yet,” said Col. Ron Replogle, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. “On those days where snow or ice make travel treacherous, I strongly encourage you to stay home if at all possible.”

Those traveling in winter weather are encouraged to remember the following:

nMake sure your vehicle is in good condition.

nInclude emergency items in your vehicle when traveling. Gather an ice scraper, tire chains, battery booster cables, flares/reflectors, blankets, gloves, flashlight, and a bag of sand or kitty litter to place in your trunk. 

nEnsure your cellular phone is fully charged and functional. 

nTake bottled water and a snack with you. Emergencies cannot be predicted.

nKeep your fuel tank half full or higher.

nDecrease your speed.

nIncrease your following distance by several car lengths.

nAllow extra driving time for you to reach your destination at a slow, safe speed. 

nMissouri law states if you’re using your windshield wipers, your headlights must be turned on. 

nIf your vehicle slides off the road, stay with it. 

If you become stranded or see another vehicle stranded on the side of the road with passengers, call the patrol emergency number at 800-525-5555 or dial *55 on a cellular phone. These numbers ring at the nearest troop headquarters.

Missouri’s Road Condition Report (888-275-6636) can help you plan your route before you leave. You may also view MoDOT’s Road Condition Map by going to the patrol’s website and clicking on the “road condition” icon.

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