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  Illinois State Police News Release   

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Winter Driving Safety & Survival Tips

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Press Release Date: October 12, 2000    || Archived October 3, 2002
SPRINGFIELD, IL - Why is driving during the winter different from any other time of the year? Your car is different. It doesn't start the same, doesn't steer the same, and sure doesn't stop the same. The roads are different. They become treacherous when covered with snow or ice, or a combination of the two, and might be closed. Visibility is different. Windshields become ice-covered or foggy, the glare from snow can be blinding, and there are fewer hours of daylight driving time. Drivers are different. When there's a change in the weather, they become tense and anxious, worrying about road conditions and hurrying in anticipation of a possible delay, and they don't pay attention to the drivers around them.

The Illinois State Police (ISP) would like for you to stay safe this winter by remembering the following safety tips:

  • Always buckle-up. Your seat belt can be the best protection against drivers who are tense and in a hurry because of weather conditions.
  • Carry a cellular phone for use during emergencies and for notifying those expecting your arrival in case there are weather delays.
  • When the weather calls for heavy snow or sub-zero temperatures, do not go out unless absolutely necessary. If you do have to make the trip, ensure someone is aware of your route of travel.
  • Make sure your car is winterized, and always keep the tank topped off. When the tank gets to half a tank, fill it up.
  • Dress for the weather, not your destination. Business attire may be appropriate for the office, but not best suited for unexpected winter weather emergencies.

The ISP road condition hot lines are operational from November 15 thru March 31, and are updated daily at 6 a.m., noon, 5 p.m., and 9 p.m., or whenever changing conditions demand.

For more information on how to keep safe during the winter driving season, contact your nearest Illinois State Police District, or visit the ISP web site at

For more information contact:
Public Information Office
Telephone: 217-782-6637
TDD: 1-800-255-3323

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