Chelan County Sheriff’s Office talks safety for winter driving

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NCWLIFE’s Jay Seabeck rode along with Chelan County Sheriff’s Deputy Sergeant Jason Reinfeld, learning more about the importance of preparation and safety during this week’s winter storm.

Sgt. Reinfeld said it is important for drivers to slow down and give themselves more travel time to help prevent accidents during severe weather conditions. Carrying extra supplies in the car is another way to better prepare, Reinfeld added.

Prep for winter driving:

“It almost comes down to, if you’re traveling the passes in the winter time, especially with a storm warning coming along, it’s always beneficial to carry some supplies that will get you through a long hold up,” Reinfeld said. “If you’re stuck on the side of the road somewhere you’re going to want to make sure you have layers of clothing, snacks and bring some water.”

Know your vehicle:

Knowing your vehicle is also key, Reinfeld said, and without four-wheel drive or weight in the back up a pick-up truck it is important to plan your trip accordingly.

“Private driveways, a lot of people will plow with their own snow plow so they can have easy access into their own home, or park at the end of their driveway,” Reinfeld said. “There’s a handful of times that I’ve parked at the bottom of a driveway and walked up because I knew I would get stuck if I drove up it.”

Traffic stops in the winter weather are primarily for educating the public, Reinfeld said.

“A lot of times, I’d say more often than not, people will get a written or verbal warning and hope that their actions don’t continue,” Reinfeld said.

After Wednesday’s snow storm, which brought an additional three to five inches of snow into the Valley along with freezing rain, there were no major accidents in Chelan County.