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State urges caution on roads as winter nears

(Chelsea Update would like to thank Dennis Raymo for the information in this story.)

As snow begins to fall in some areas of the state, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP) has launched its winter driving safety campaign to remind drivers to slow down and use caution when traveling on slick and snow-covered roads.

Of the more than 1.5 million total crashes reported in Michigan from 2015-2019, 14.2 percent (220,526) were winter-weather related, according to the Michigan State Police Criminal Justice Information Center.

Of those crashes on icy, snowy, or slushy road conditions, 361 involved fatalities in which 402 people lost their lives.

“The goal of the ‘Drive Slow on Ice & Snow’ campaign is to save lives and decrease the number of serious injuries on Michigan roadways,” said Michael L. Prince, OHSP director, in a press release.

“By raising awareness about the challenges and dangers inherent in winter driving we hope to encourage everyone to reduce their speed when driving on slick surfaces and leave plenty of space between vehicles,” he said.

This year, the OHSP is expanding its winter driving safety outreach by launching a new website packed with tips and useful resources. When drivers visit www.michigan.gov/WinterDriving, they can find advice addressing a wide range of cold-weather challenges, including: planning a safe route, how to control their vehicle, what to do in an emergency, passenger safety, tire tips and more.

The “Drive Slow on Ice & Snow” campaign is supported by federal traffic safety funds.

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