Troopers looking for unsafe drivers in foggy conditions

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FARMINGTON, Utah (ABC4 News)— On Thursday the fog was so thick it was difficult to make out the roller coasters at the Lagoon theme park.

Utah Highway Patrol says visibility out on the roadway was much worse.

During a ride-a-long with Utah Highway Patrol, Trooper Zamora says drivers failing to move over for emergency vehicles is a major concern. 

“Right now what we’ll do is we will sit here as an early warning for the trooper just ahead of us,” Trooper Zamora said. 

Trooper Zamora was looking for drivers that didn’t move over.

“In this type of weather it’s important because of the rain and snow on the roadway,” she said.

The driver Trooper Zamora pulled over received a warning. 

We saw several other drivers pulled for swerving, not having headlights, and driving too fast.

“We have a lot of rain crashes from hydroplaning–people with bad tires, hydroplaning usually crashing into the wall,” Trooper Zamora said.

Trooper Zamora has reminders for drivers in the event of hydroplaning. 

“Keep your foot off the gas. If the rest end of your vehicle is going towards the left, steer to the left steer into the skid,” Trooper Zamora said.

The National Weather Service offers the following tips for driving in the fog:

  • Slow down and allow extra time to reach your destination.
  • Make your vehicle visible to others both ahead of you and behind you by using your low-beam headlights since this means your taillights will also be on. Use fog lights if you have them.
  • Never use your high-beam lights. Using high beam lights causes glare, making it more difficult for you to see what’s ahead of you on the road.
  • Leave plenty of distance between you and the vehicle in front of you to account for sudden stops or changes in the traffic pattern.
  • To ensure you are staying in the proper lane, follow the lines on the road with your eyes.
  • In extremely dense fog where visibility is near zero, the best course of action is to first turn on your hazard lights, then simply pull into a safe location such as a parking lot of a local business and stop.
  • If there is no parking lot or driveway to pull into, pull your vehicle off to the side of the road as far as possible. Once you come to a stop, turn off all lights except your hazard flashing lights, set the emergency brake, and take your foot off of the brake pedal to be sure the tail lights are not illuminated so that other drivers don’t mistakenly run into you.

Trooper Zamora hopes her message cuts down on the amount of troopers hit during traffic stops. 

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During the Thanksgiving holiday, UHP says 10 troopers where hit during traffic stops on the side of the road. 

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