Date: 25th January, 2017
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service is reminding drivers to take extra care while the current freezing fog conditions continue.
Over the last few mornings, the Service has been called to numerous road traffic collisions across its area due to the adverse weather.
Group Manager Byron Standen said: “The freezing conditions mean black ice on the roads, while the fog affects visibility. Whilst attending these incidents, we have been shocked by how many drivers have not had even basic lights on their vehicles, let alone fog lights. We would urge all drivers to take extra care and be mindful of the additional risk this poor weather presents, especially first thing in the morning and when it’s dark.”
Some top tips for drivers include:
- Slow right down – if visibility is poor or the road is wet or icy, it will take you longer to react to hazards and your speed should be reduced accordingly. If you have a temperature gauge in your vehicle that is showing zero degrees or below, then presume that the roads will be icy.
- Maintain a safe gap behind the vehicle in front – stopping distances are double in the wet and ten times greater in icy weather. The gap between you and the vehicle in front is your braking space in a crisis.
- Look out for vulnerable road users – be aware that people on foot, bicycles, motorbikes and horses are harder to spot in adverse weather and in the dark. Drive as though someone could step out in front of you at any time.
- Look out for signs warning of adverse conditions – including fixed signs, such as those warning of exposure to high winds, and variable message signs on motorways that warn of fog, snow and which may display temporary slower speed limits.
- Stay in control – avoid harsh braking and acceleration, and carry out manoeuvres slowly and with extra care.
- Use lights – put lights on in gloomy weather or when visibility is reduced. Only use front and rear fog lights in dense fog.
- Listen to travel news on local radio so you know where problem areas are.
More advice can be found at www.dwfire.org.uk/road-safety