Although we're eight days away from the official start of winter, our area has had more snowfalls than we've seen during this time over the last few years. Idahoans all know the routine, the snow falls, we shovel the snow, and then the roads and sidewalks are safe for normal travel speeds. However, if you're new to the area and not familiar with freezing temperatures, let us warn you about the black ice on all surfaces during the morning commute.

What is Black Ice?

The adage defining pornography, 'I'll know it when I see it, doesn't apply to black ice. Whether on foot or in a vehicle, one rarely sees black ice because it's a transparent coat of ice. In other words, the surface looks great until you try to use your brakes. The ice is slippery, causing accidents due to vehicles' inability to stop.

Multiple weather forecasts predict that Monday night's temperatures will be well below freezing allowing black ice to form. Road crews cannot pretreat the roads because the liquid has to freeze before using a deicer.

How to handle Black Ice shared these safety tips on how to drive in black ice conditions.

  • Keep your steering wheel straight. If you turn the wheel, you have a better chance of sliding and losing control of your vehicle.
  • Do not brake. Braking causes the vehicle to slide, especially if you brake too hard.
  • Take your foot off the accelerator to reduce speed. It is best to let the car stop on its own if you have enough room in front of you.

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