The North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) and the North Dakota Highway Patrol (NDHP) remind motorists to stay safe during this busy travel season. “There are a number of things drivers can do to ensure they arrive at their destination safely,” says Tom Sorel, NDDOT Director. “Everything from buckling your seat belt to checking road conditions before traveling are all ways to prevent motor vehicle crashes and tragedies from occurring.”
While many people travel to holiday festivities with friends and family it is important to make smart choices when behind the wheel. “The best gift someone can give their loved ones is a safe ride,” Colonel Michael Gerhardt, NDHP says. “Drive sober, buckle up, obey posted speed limits or lower speeds for the conditions and drive distraction free will help to ensure a safe and fun holiday season.”
The National Weather Service is forecasting winter weather for much of the state with bitterly cold temperatures. Motorists should always check the road conditions before traveling and abide by the travel warnings issued by the NDDOT, NDHP and local law enforcement. Those warnings are in place for the safety of the traveling public and allow snow plow operators, emergency responders and law enforcement to effectively do their jobs.
The NDDOT provides many tools to Know Before You Go including:
- NDRoads smartphone app available for free download: https://www.dot.nd.gov/public/mobile-apps.htm
- Online Travel Information Map: http://www.dot.nd.gov/travel-info-v2/
- Text and email subscription service http://www.dot.nd.gov/govdelivery/landing.htm.
- Call 511
Winter driving travel tips to consider when traveling over the holidays:
- Remember, don't crowd the plow!
- Know where the plow is on multi-lane roadways. The plow could be in either lane or on the shoulder.
- Never drive through "whiteouts" caused by crosswinds or plowing light snow.
- Be ready to change travel plans as weather conditions warrant
- Carry a winter survival kit
- Never use cruise control when driving on wet or icy roadways
- Fill your gas tank before you go
- Keep family or friends informed of your travel schedule and route
- Travel with a charged cell phone
All travelers are encouraged to monitor road conditions and use caution while traveling. Wear seat belts, reduce speeds and drive according to the conditions.
For road information, call 511 or visit www.dot.nd.gov.