‘Don’t slam on your brakes’: When winter weather hits, stay calm and collected on the roads

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SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Another winter storm is hitting Utah and experts are warning drivers yet again about how to handle the roads if they must drive.

Several inches of snowfall are expected to hit different parts of the Beehive State on Monday.

Utah’s Emergency Management team said when the winter weather strikes, it’s critical to stay calm. Auto experts say now is the time to get the right tires before an accident happens.

“When you are going up and down the canyon, especially on those snowy days, they are going to require you to have a tire that is rated with the three-peak mountain snowflakes on there, winter tires, studded tires or chains,” said Big O Tires employee Victor Quintero.

Snow totals will range from a few inches to more than a foot, but even one to two inches of snow is dangerous to drive in.

“You usually see people who are a little overly confident,” said Quintero. “It is better to be cautious and be a defensive driver than it is to try to do 90 mph on Bangerter on I-215 in a foot of snow.”

“That is an important thing,” said Utah Division of Emergency Management spokesperson Wade Mathews. “Do stay calm. Don’t panic. One of the things we encourage people do is stay with the vehicle.”

Mathews said it’s important to be aware of all winter weather and always check the road conditions. Meanwhile, Quintero at Big O Tires says you should always stay vigilant while driving on the roads.

“If you are starting to slip or starting to slide, you want to try your best to remain calm as much as you can,” said Quintero. “Keep both hands on the wheel and try to get some grip.”

Mathews says folks should avoid driving somewhere unless it’s absolutely necessary.

“That’s the first best bet, just like in an oncoming disaster, protective action is the best preventative action,” said Mathews. “Get out of the way.”

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