Cold winter weather can bring life to a standstill in Pennsylvania. From bumper-to-bumper traffic on the highways to school closings during times of inclement weather, there are many ways in which icy and snowy weather in Pennsylvania will affect your experience out on the roads.
Statistically, winter weather has a major impact on traffic and personal safety. The three statistics below help give a clear understanding of the risks associated with winter weather.
Traffic speeds will drop from between 30% to 40%
On busy roads that see heavy amounts of traffic, the speed of the average vehicle will decline significantly when the roads are snowy, icy or slushy. The worse the weather and the roads seem to be, the more significant the slowdown in most cases.
A 30 to 40% reduction in your rate of travel might add half an hour or more to your commute in some cases. You will need to plan your day accordingly so that you can make it to work on time while traveling at appropriate speeds.
Your stopping distance increases by a factor of 10 on frozen roads
When the roads are covered in slick, frozen precipitation, it may take a lot longer for your vehicle to come to a complete stop. That is one of the reasons why traffic tends to slow down when the roads are wet, snowy or icy.
You will need to not only reduce your traveling speed but also increase the distance between your vehicle and the others around you so that you can stop without hitting them if it becomes necessary to do so. You will travel 10 times longer on icy roads than you usually do before coming to a complete stop.
More than 1,800 people die annually in snow or ice-related crashes
There are thousands of weather-related collisions across the country every month in the United States during the winter, and a fraction of them will prove fatal. The government records more than 150, 000 crashes related to winter weather each year, and there are also over 1,800 deaths because of those crashes.
Although many collisions may only result in property damage, deadly and injurious crashes are more likely when people lose control of their vehicles, as often happens during inclement winter weather situations. Adjusting your habits for changing road conditions will help you reduce your likelihood of causing a motor vehicle collision in Pennsylvania this winter.