IDOT Pushes “Winter Weather – Get It Together”

If you live in the Chicago area, or really anywhere in the Midwest, you know that winter is upon us. We had our first snow last weekend and we are looking at upwards of 12 inches of snow through tonight in the Chicagoland area. The Illinois Department of Transportation (“IDOT”) has been working hard to help drivers avoid traffic accidents and stay safe on the roads during the winter months. IDOT issued a press release recently called “Winter Weather – Get It Together,” which provides a list of driving tips to use when the roads are snowy and icy. Below is a list of driving tips:

  • Always wear a seat belt. It’s the law in Illinois.
  • Slow down. Slower speeds, slower acceleration, slower steering and slower braking all are required in winter driving conditions.
  • Drop it and drive. Put down the handheld devices – it, too, is the law in Illinois.
  • Don’t crowd the plow. A snow plow operator’s field of vision is restricted. You may see him, but he may not see you.
  • Avoid using cruise control in snow and ice.
  • Watch out for black ice on roads that appear clear but can be treacherous.
  • Be especially careful approaching intersections, ramps, bridges and shady areas. All of them are prone to icing.
  • Do not travel during bad weather unless absolutely necessary. If you do have to make a trip, check the forecast and make sure someone is aware of your travel route. Consider taking public transportation if it is an option.
  • Prepare an emergency car care kit that contains jumper cables, flares or reflectors, windshield washer fluid, a small ice scraper, traction material, blankets, non-perishable food and a first aid kit.
  • Carry a cell phone and a car charger in case of emergency.
  • Follow Scott’s Law. Slow down and move over for stopped emergency, construction and maintenance vehicles. ·
  • For more winter driving tips, check out this short IDOT video

Please be careful when driving in winter weather, but if you or someone you love is injured in a Chicago car crash or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago personal injury lawyer, Aaron J. Bryant, for a free legal consultation. Call 312-614-1076 for a free legal consultation.

Winter Driving Tips From The Illinois State Police

We were kind of lucky this winter in Chicago. December and January were fairly mild and we didn’t see a lot of ice or snow. That changed last week when the area was hit with what some are saying the 6th largest blizzard in Chicago history. Up to nineteen (19) inches of snow fell in certain parts of the metropolitan area.

With winter weather can com treacherous driving conditions. There is snow to deal with along with black ice and the resulting pot holes (though the city seems to be taking better care of these this year). The Illinois State Police have posted on their website some useful tips on how to prepare for winter driving and what to do in case you are stuck or have car issues.

What to do before driving in winter weather:

  1. Plan your travel, selecting both primary and alternate routes.
  2. Let someone know your travel routes and itinerary so that, if you don’t arrive on time, officials will know where to search for you.
  3. Check latest weather information on your radio.
  4. Try not to travel alone – two or three people are preferable.
  5. Travel in convoy (with another vehicle) if possible.
  6. Drive carefully and defensively. Watch for ice patches on bridges and overpasses.
  7. If a storm begins to be too much for you to handle, seek refuge immediately.
  8. If your car should become disabled, stay with the vehicle, running your engine and heater for short intervals. Be sure to “crack” a window in the vehicle to avoid carbon monoxide build-up.

Here are some tips what to check in your vehicle before driving during the winter:

  1. ignition system
  2. fuel system
  3. brakes
  4. exhaust system
  5. wiper blades
  6. snow tires
  7. tire tread
  8. defroster
  9. proper grade oil
  10. cooling system
  11. battery
  12. lights
  13. antifreeze

Finally, here are a list of items to store in your vehicle in case of winter emergencies. Especially if you are driving long distances:

  1. or 3 pound coffee can (punch 3 holes at the top of can, equal distance apart)
  2. 60-inch length of twine or heavy string (cut into 3 equal pieces – used to suspend can)
  3. 3 large safety pins (tie string to safety pins and pin to car roof interior to suspend can over candle)
  4. 1 candle 2″ diameter (place on lid under suspended can for melting snow)
  5. 1 pocket knife, reasonably sharp (or substitute with scissors)
  6. 3 pieces of bright cloth 2″ wide x 36″ long (tie to antenna or door handle)
  7. Several packets of soup, hot chocolate, tea, bouillon cubes, etc. (mixed into melted snow to provide warmth and nutrition)
  8. 1 small package of peanuts (provides protein) & fruit-flavored candy (orange slices, jelly beans, etc.-avoid chocolate)
  9. 1 pair of athletic socks (cotton) and 1 pair of glove liners (cotton)
  10. 2 packages of book matches
  11. 1 sun shield blanket or 2 large green or black plastic leaf bags (to reflect body heat)
  12. 1 pen light and batteries (keep separate)

Be careful the rest of this winter season and remember if you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Chicago car crash or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago personal injury lawyer, Aaron Bryant, for a free legal consultation at 312-614-1076.

IDOT’s Winter Weather Driving Tips

Winter weather has hit hard and
early this year in Chicago and throughout Illinois. Though it’s very important
to have your guard up when driving, it is especially important when there is
ice and snow on the roads. The Illinois Department of Transportation (“IDOT”)
posted some important tips on their website for both how to handle the road and
also a survival  kit in case you happened to become stranded. Read the
below tips so that you will be ready this winter to avoid car accidents and
dangerous situtations:

Survival Kit:

·  Ice scraper,
snow brush, rags and paper towels.

·  Jumper
cables, basic tool kit, antifreeze, no-freeze windshield washer fluid and extra
drive belt(s).

·  Shovel,
traction mats or old rugs, tire chains, salt, cat box litter or sand.

·  Blankets and
extra clothing including hats, socks, waterproof boots, coats and gloves.

·  Non-perishable,
high-calorie food. 

·  Candles,
waterproof matches and a metal container (coffee can) in which to melt snow
into water.

·  Flashlight
with extra batteries, flares or roadway reflectors.

·  A basic
first aid kit and a fire extinguisher.

·  A cellular
telephone with a backup power source might be the single most important safety
item available. A citizen’s band radio is a good alternative.

Driving tips: 

·  Buckle those
seat belts! (It’s the law)

·  Be prepared
to turn back or seek refuge if conditions become threatening.

·  In RAIN,
drive with your headlights on dim. 

·  In FOG,
drive with your headlights on dim, or use fog lights.

·  If the fog
is too dense, pull off the roadway and stop. Do not drive at less than 10 miles
per hour.

·  In RAIN,
FOG, SNOW or SLEET, do not overdrive your headlights.

·  Stay within
the limits of your vision.

·  Keep your
windows clear of snow and ice. Do not start until your windshield is defrosted.

·  Drive slower
and increase your following distance. Your speed should be adjusted for the
conditions and match the flow of traffic.

·  Roadway
conditions may vary depending on the sun, shade or roadway surface. Watch for
slick spots especially under bridges, on overpasses and in shaded spots. Be
prepared to react physically and mentally. 

·  If the
pavement is snow or ice covered, start slowly and brake gently. Beginbraking
early when you come to an intersection.

·  If you start
to slide, ease off the gas pedal or brakes. Steer into the direction of the
skid until you feel you have regained traction then straighten your vehicle.

·  When you
approach a snow plow from behind, pass with care and only when you can see
the road ahead of the plow. You should not try to pass in blowing snow. There
may be a vehicle in that cloud of snow! Allow more distance between you and the
plow, they may be spreading salt.

·  Be alert
when you approach a cloud of snow which covers the road, especially on passing
lanes of interstates or freeways. Slow down and approach with caution. A snow
plow may be at work clearing the lane or preparing to turn around.

·  Be careful
after a minor rear end accident. If you are bumped from behind and you do not
feel comfortable exiting your vehicle, motion the other driver and drive to the
nearest police station, 24-hour store, service station, hospital or fire

If you or someone you
love has been involved in a serious Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago personal injury lawyer Aaron Bryant for a free legal consultation at 312-588-3384. 

IDOT Stresses Safe Winter Driving

We are in the heart of winter here in the Midwest and The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is stressing the importance of safe driving when the weather turns ugly.  The reported recently about IDOT’s effort to inform drivers about safety hazards and steps to take to protect yourself and other drivers.

First, it is important to be wary of snow plows and salt trucks on the road.  IDOT spokesman Brian Williamson said 30 percent of the traffic crashes involving IDOT snow plows and salt trucks are caused by vehicles following too closely.  “Slow down for yourselves and slow down for the folks who are trying to clear the roads; it just makes good sense,” said District 14 Trooper and Safety Education Officer Ed Howard

“Vehicle preparation is very important,” he said. “Make sure your windshield washer fluid is full and your wiper (blades are in good condition). Also, have a plan; let others know where you’re going and what route you’ll be taking.”

Howard said drivers should check all of the road condition hotlines for the areas they’ll be driving to.
He said District 14 gets frequent calls from the public asking about travel conditions.

Be careful out there, and if you can, take public transportation if it’s available for you. If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident  or Chicago truck accident , then call Chicago accident attorney, Aaron Bryant , for a free consultation  at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at