Safety On The Road
by Ashley Kringen, Reporter
December 28, 2012 9:33 PM
Even though the sun was shining and some of the snow melted Friday, there are still dangers on the road.
This was painfully evident Friday, especially through the noon hour as several crashes took place around the Sioux Empire.
Tips to prevent car crashes include reducing speed on the road and being aware of weather conditions while driving, but although these tips seem as if they could be common sense, crashes continue to happen.
"Drivers need to remember to slow down and not overdrive the conditions," said Trooper Chris Hogan.
Trooper Chris Hogan with the South Dakota Highway Patrol said he's been busy responding to crash after crash, following recent snowstorms in Sioux Falls.
Each crash seems to have some common denominators, such as following a car too close or making impulse decisions behind the wheel.
"Try not to make abrupt movements whether that's turning or breaking and just allowing yourself more time to get to your destination," said Hogan.
Slippery roads Friday morning caused a semi-truck to crash into the ditch on Interstate 229 between Western and Minnesota, traffic was slow and backed up for nearly an hour.
Crashes are not just happening on the interstate, a car and a bus collided near 8th and Minnesota Friday afternoon and at least four people were taken away on stretchers.
Trooper Hogan said whether on the Interstate or within city limits, one-thing officials want to avoid is secondary crashes.
"Other vehicles sliding into our patrol cars or sliding into cars that may be stopped in the roadway," said Hogan.
To help prevent these crashes, amber lights positioned on top of patrol cars are used to get people to slow down and move over.
With cold conditions likely to last all winter, Trooper Hogan said drivers should have a safety survival pack in the car.
“We recommend in there warm clothing, blanket, maybe some food, water, cell phone and charger," said Hogan.
Which could come in use if you find yourself on the side of the road, waiting for assistance from a state trooper.
Trooper Hogan said work has been slammed ever since the snow began to fall and said secondary crashes are becoming quite common.
On Thursday a trooper was responding to a crash when a car swerved into his vehicle.
The Sioux Falls Police Department said between midnight and noon Friday, there were a dozen reported weather related car crashes.