The Missouri Highway Patrol is raising concern after investigating an unusually high number of traffic crashes during this week’s major snowstorm.
Troopers investigated 1,054 traffic crashes that resulted in 96 injuries and two fatalities on Feb. 4 and 5, according to preliminary statistics.
On a typical day, troopers work an average 100 traffic crashes statewide, according to a release from highway patrol.
During the recent winter storm, troopers also answered 3,045 calls for assistance on those two days, including calls that involved vehicles breaking down, sliding off the roadways or impeding snow removal after they were abandoned on the side of the road, according to the release.
“It is dangerously cold outside, and winter isn’t finished with Missouri quite yet,” Col. Ron Replogle, superintendent of the Missouri Highway Patrol said in the release. “On those days where snow or ice make travel treacherous, I strongly encourage you to stay home if at all possible.”
For those who must venture out, the highway patrol suggest people make sure their vehicle is in good working condition and has emergency items like an ice scraper, tire chains, battery booster cables, flares blankets and kitty litter.
People should also make sure their cell phone is fully charged and they have water and snacks. They should also keep the fuel tank at least half full.
When driving, people should decrease their speeds and increase the distances they are following other vehicles. Also they should allow extra time to reach their destinations.