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5 Things to Know About Driving in Tuesday's Ice Storm

Long Island is in for a terrible two days of winter weather. These tips can save your life.

The National Weather Service says Long Island is in for a terrible two days of winter weather. First snow, then sleet and freezing rain, will leave area roads treacherous.

Snow is expected to start falling in the morning, then turn to sleet and freezing rain as the day progresses. Snow and sleet accumulations could be up to 3 inches on the ground before it's covered with a fresh layering of ice as darkness falls.

The freezing rain could continue into Wednesday. Major ice-related issues are possible, experts say.

And driving in all of this could be nightmarish and dangerous. 

The best advice: Don't drive. New York City officials Monday night were warning motorists to avoid driving into the city Tuesday. If you don't have to, don't go out. It really is that dangerous.

If you must, here are some tips for keeping safer as Plainview's roads freeze over. According to the National Safety Council and the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles:

  • Slow down; dramatically so. Leave plenty of room to stop -- three times the normal space between you and the car in front of you. Turn on your headlights.
  • Your car isn't the Batmobile. Ask any firefighter: SUV, Jeeps, four- and front-wheel drive vehicles end up overturned and in ditches all the time. Break gently. If your wheels start to lock, ease off the brake.
  • Use your lower gears to assist with traction, particularly on hills. The lower gears are second (2) and first, (1) which appear below the "drive." gear.
  • Be especially careful on bridges and overpasses. Their surfaces freeze first, before the rest of the roadway. 
  • Don't pass snow plows and sanding trucks. The drivers have limited visibility. And, the road ahead of the plow is probably in worse shape than the roadway behind it.

Stay with Plainview Patch Tuesday for frequent updates on the winter storm and its impact on the region.

Bob Rabey February 01, 2011 at 07:47 AM
Hey Joe, you didn't mention the fact that people should remove ALL the snow off their cars. In the wake of all these recent storms, I can't tell you just how many people I've seen driving down the road with two feet of snow on their roof! Some, just clear a patch on their windshields, and leave everything else. I applaud New Jersey for making it a law that this must be done in the name of safety. Trust me, I think there are more then enough laws on the books to the point of being rediculous. One would "think" this all would be common sense. But as my Mom used to say, "Common sense is NOT common!"
JL February 01, 2011 at 10:30 AM
Also, remember to dig out those fire hydrants. Thanks to my neighbor who took the initiative.
TheGreek February 01, 2011 at 06:53 PM
Yea, clear the snow from your car roof. The live you save could be your own. I saw one guy stomp on the brakes because someone cut him off, and when he did that, all the snow on his car roof slid down onto his windshield, covering it completely. Did he make a panic stop, no! He just kept driving down Old Country Road with his windshield totally covered in snow.

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