Only one impaired driving arrest this holiday season, police say
Dec 29, 2012 11:45 AM ET
Dec 29, 2012 11:42 AM ET
Despite the sudden shift into winter, Hamilton roads have remained fairly safe this holiday season, police say, with only one impaired driving arrest so far.
On Saturday, though snow was falling and a few collisions occurred, police said for the most part people were driving carefully.
"Usually when it snows all day people have time to adjust to the driving conditions and they have," Staff Sgt. Emidio Evangelista explained.
"We haven't had an exceptional amount of accidents."
Yesterday, police were proud to announce they hadn't had any impaired driving charges over the holiday season, although that number rose to one overnight. Still, Evangelista said the season has seen more responsible driving.
"As far as we're concerned, we've only had one and that's definitely a good sign," he said, adding police will continue RIDE checks throughout the weekend and New Year's Eve to make sure impaired drivers stay off the roads.
When driving in snowy conditions, police recommend the following tips to keep you and other drivers safe:
- Obey the speed limits. The limits were set for ideal driving conditions. If the weather dictates less than ideal conditions, slow down.
- Expect the unexpected. In winter conditions the possibility of black ice and white outs could be present along with the standard snow and slush conditions.
- Do not tail gate. The stopping and following distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front should be increased in winter conditions.
- As always, do not drink and drive.
- Avoid aggressive drivers. Get out of their way and do not challenge them.
- Always wear your seatbelt.
- Give yourself extra time to get to your destination. The weather and road conditions could change unexpectedly.
- Check with the weather service for weather conditions on your planned route.
- Start your trip well rested and alert. If you get tired along the way, take a break.
Police also recommend you make sure your car is in tip-top shape before setting out in winter weather by going over the following checklist:
- Check the oil, water, brake, washer fluid and other fluid levels.
- Make sure the windshield is clean and the rearview mirrors are properly adjusted for good visibility
- The windshield wipers should be in good condition, and able to remove the snow and ice that may build up on your windshield.
- Make sure that all your lights and turn signals are in good working order.
- Check tire conditions and pressure. If possible, install winter tires on your vehicle. These will assist in traction and the ability to stop.
- Have a safety/survival kit on board. Flares, blanket, shovel, candles, matches, road salt, non perishable food and a fully charged cell phone if possible
- Maintain a full tank of gas.