THUNDER BAY – Thunder Bay OPP officers have responded to 22 collisions since Friday, December 29, 2017. The collisions have included motorists losing control and entering the ditch, as well as, vehicles coming into collision with other vehicles.
The severities of the collisions have ranged from vehicles sustaining damages only, to occupants of vehicles involved in collisions suffering serious injuries. In one instance, a young man, an aspiring hockey player, and a passenger in a vehicle involved in one of the 22 collisions has reportedly suffered a serious neck injury and has been flown by air ambulance to a southern Ontario medical facility.
OPP would like to remind motorists that during the extreme cold temperatures the Thunder Bay area has been experiencing recently, the pavement on highways and roadways may appear to be dry and bare when in actuality the roads are frost covered and icy.
With the Extreme Cold Warnings in effect, any accident has the potential to become far more life-threatening simply due to the cold. Hypothermia is a serious medical issue and for a person or persons injured in a motor vehicle accident waiting for help could easily become deadly
Motorists are advised of the following safety tips to help everyone arrive at their destination safely:
– Equip your vehicle with proper winter tires. When compared to regular or all-season tires, tests have proven that snow tires provide better traction, control and reduced stopping distances on snow-covered or icy roads.
– Slow down! Drive according to current road and weather conditions. Reduce your speed when adverse weather conditions arise.
– Give yourself extra time to reach your destination. Consider postponing or canceling your trip if the weather does not improve.
– Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you. Remember, longer stopping distances may be required.
– Make it a habit of using your full set of headlights during the winter months; daylight running lights do not engage your rear tail lights, making it difficult for drivers behind you to see your vehicle.
– Be able to see and be seen. Clean frost and snow off all windows, mirrors, and lights.
Drive with caution and arrive at your destination safely.