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PennDOT Shares Winter Driving Tips Ahead of Forecasted Storm

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is reminding motorists to always be prepared and exercise caution when traveling during inclement weather ahead of a forecasted winter storm expected to impact the northwest region in the coming days.

Also, in connection with the upcoming Winter Driving Safety Awareness Week that runs from January 15 to January 22, 2023, PennDOT is advising motorists to avoid traveling travel during winter weather events whenever possible. However, if drivers do need to travel, they are urged to practice the following winter driving tips:

  • Use low beams in snowy weather.

  • Keep the gas tank at least half full.

  • Slow down your speed.

  • Increase the following distance from the vehicle in front of you.

  • Use extra caution on bridges and ramps, where ice can form without warning.

All vehicles must be fully clear of ice and snow before winter travel. Failing to clear the windshield alone is a $25 fine but could exceed $100 with fees. If snow or ice is dislodged or falls from a moving vehicle and strikes another vehicle or pedestrian causing death or serious bodily injury, the operator of that vehicle could receive a $200 to $1,000 fine.

To prepare for the risk of becoming stranded or encountering a crisis situation on the roadway, motorists are urged to carry an emergency kit in their vehicles. Supplies may include non-perishable food, water, first-aid supplies, warm clothes, a blanket, cell phone charger, and a small snow shovel. Kits can be tailored to the specific needs of the individuals in the vehicle, with items such as baby supplies, extra medication, pet supplies, or even children's games.

For more information on safe winter travel, an emergency kit checklist and information on PennDOT's winter operations, visit Other highway safety information is available at

Motorists can check conditions on more than 40,000 roadway miles, including color-coded winter conditions on 2,900 miles, by visiting 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information, and access to more than 1,000 traffic cameras.

511PA is also available through a free smartphone application for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1, or by following regional twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website.

Subscribe to PennDOT news and traffic alerts in Crawford, Erie, Forest, Mercer, Venango, and Warren counties at

Follow local PennDOT news on Twitter and like the department on Facebook.
MEDIA CONTACT: Saxon Daugherty, 814-678-7095

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