Winter Blast

With the winter weather comes snowy roads which are causing a lot of accidents across Southern Colorado and making it a slow go for drivers.

Darkness brought more snow and more problems on the roads. Most areas saw snowpacked streets and slow-going throughout the day which was bad news even for drivers who though their cars were ready for winter.

"The roads are terrible. It kind of took me suprise even in 4-wheel drive. There's black ice. Its' bad from Motor City all the way to Garden of the Gods."

Four people in an SUV escaped injury when they rolled over near I-25 and Fillmore Avenue.

Earlier Saturday, an accident on the interstate at Woodmen Avenue closed the southbound lanes for hours. Lieutenant Kiersten Casey of the Colorado Springs Fire Department says 12 to 15 cars were caught in the pile-up.

"Some kind of chain reaction got started and ended up with multiple cars hitting the guard rails and bouncing off each other."

No one was seriously hurt but it took time to get all the wrecked cars off the road. The lengthy delays left some rethinking their afternoon plans.

"We're off to hockey practice but the weather is not cooperating over here so we're probably gonna be exteremly late or miss it entirely." Extended Web Coverage

A Motorists Guide to Winter Driving

Pre-Trip Planning

  • To minimize the chances of a weather-related delay, plan ahead with safety in mind.

  • Always be sure to check the forecast; if a winter storm is predicted for the area in which you will be driving, think twice, or ask yourself if the trip is necessary.

  • Always have an emergency car care kit that contains jumper cables, flares or reflectors, windshield washer fluid, a small shovel, an ice scraper, antifreeze, blankets; nonperishable food; and a first aid kit.

Starting Your Car

  • Be sure to turn off all accessories (radio, heater, lights etc.) before starting your car. This will maximize your battery's starting power.

  • If your car has a fuel injection system, don't touch the accelerator pedal. For carbureted cars, depress the accelerator once before attempting to start the vehicle. Then, simply turn the key and hold it for a few seconds.

Handling Roadside Emergencies

  • Pull as far off the road as possible. This helps to avoid getting hit by another vehicle.

  • Indicate trouble by opening the hood and turning on the vehicle's emergency flashers. Place a "Call Police" sign in the rear window.

  • Stay in the car. Avoid the temptation of accepting a ride with a stranger. Instead, if someone offers help, ask him or her to notify the police if you do not own a cell phone. Leave only with a marked police car or a state or city emergency vehicle.

  • Don't walk or hitchhike, both of which invite trouble-you could either get caught in a storm, or be forced in a dangerous situation involving strangers.

Driving Tips

  • Always wear seatbelts.

  • Remove ice and snow from windows, license plates and lights. Also be sure to clear snow from the vehicle's hood, roof and trunk.

  • Reduce your speed while driving. The posted speed limits are for dry, clear conditions only.

  • Watch for slick spots under bridges and on overpasses.

  • Keep your gas tank at least two-thirds full to prevent the vehicle's fuel line from freezing.

Source: contributed to this report.