Dangers of Winter Storms

Winter storms can present many dangers on the road and also at home. Ice storms and snow storms present danger when they arrive.

Ice storms present serious problems. The ice causes power lines to freeze which results in power lines breaking and sometimes widespread power outages. The power outages can leave people without heat for several days. Even one night without heat can be dangerous for anyone especially very young people or the elderly. It can also present a problem to people who are on oxygen or need power for other health reasons.

Ice storms are not the only kind of storms that cause power outages, heavy snow can cause power lines to break and have the same results as the ice storms. Heavy snow also presents the danger of trees falling on homes or cars which can both result in injury to people.

Snow storms cause problems on the road. While it is snowing visibility is extremely poor. Drivers need to be extra cautious when driving during a snow storm or not drive at all if visibility is too bad. Sometimes there are whiteouts where visibility is completely non-existent, all that can be seen is snow. It is best to stay off the road when there’s a whiteout. While the snow is falling the roads can become very hard to travel if the snow plows have not cleared them. If the snow is falling hard it can actually become so deep that it is impossible to travel on the road. Sometimes cars can actually get stuck in the snow on the roads which can leave people stranded in the cold. Even if the roads have been plowed they are slick. Intersections become dangerous because it is hard to come to a stop on the slick roads.

Once the snow is done falling and the roads have been plowed temperatures usually drop. The snow on the roads turns to ice which is very dangerous to drive on. Cars slip and slide all over the road. It is also hard coming to a stop which presents danger at intersections when it is no longer snowing.

The most dangerous part of winter storms are the other drivers. There are a lot of people who have 4-wheel drive vehicles and think that they can drive as fast as they want. They do not realize that the 4-wheel drive does not give them traction on ice.  It also does not give them traction to come to a stop on icy/snow packed roads. They pose a danger to other travelers because they do not pass safely, they are unable to stop at intersections and they lose control on the icy roads presenting a danger to everyone else on the road.

It is best to stay home when a snow storm hits. If that is not possible leave early and travel slowly. Be careful, watch for other drivers and remember that it’s better to arrive late than not at all.