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According to our friends at KLBK/Everything Lubbock, Lubbock experienced 83 vehicle wrecks before 11 a.m. this morning (October 26th, 2020). That is a tremendous amount of damage and hurt that could have possibly been avoided. But I'm not here to wag a finger at anyone, as I don't necessarily believe it's any one individual's fault.

Obviously, more salt and sand trucks to de-ice the roads early would have prevented some of these wrecks. As of 2019, Lubbock had 12 of them, but I'm not sure that's enough to cover our most traveled areas. Were they even implemented this time? Judging by the road closures, I'm not so sure.

Honestly, would it have hurt anything to delay or cancel in-person school today? Many school systems have emergency text alerts for parents, and, you know, access to local media to get the word out.

The best solution to avoiding wrecking in icy conditions is to stay home if at all possible. But that was not possible for me, and it likely wasn't possible for you either. We must work, even if our city lacks the proper infrastructure, or the will to use said infrastructure, to handle icy days.

Since we have to drive, I recommend checking drivetexas.org to know exactly were the worst spots are, so hopefully you can re-route to avoid them.

Here are some more tips on how to drive in icy conditions safely from AAA:

  • Drive slowly. Always adjust your speed down to account for lower traction when driving on snow or ice.

  • Accelerate and decelerate slowly. Apply the gas slowly to regain traction and avoid skids. Don’t try to get moving in a hurry and take time to slow down for a stoplight. Remember: It takes longer to slow down on icy roads.

  • Increase your following distance to five to six seconds. This increased margin of safety will provide the longer distance needed if you have to stop.

  • Know your brakes. Whether you have antilock brakes or not, keep the heel of your foot on the floor and use the ball of your foot to apply firm, steady pressure on the brake pedal.

  • Don’t stop if you can avoid it. There’s a big difference in the amount of inertia it takes to start moving from a full stop versus how much it takes to get moving while still rolling. If you can slow down enough to keep rolling until a traffic light changes, do it.

It astounds me that this continues to be such a huge problem. It looks like tomorrow will be worse, so please stay safe.

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