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WSP Troopers: Speed Is Still A Problem Despite Wildfires And Smoke

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As the COVID-19 lockdowns kept a great number of Washingtonians away from the road, Washington State Patrol troopers warned that drivers were still driving too fast, ignoring speed limits. Now that Washington, Oregon, and California residents all deal with the wildfires and their backlash, troopers are warning of limited visibility. In order to avoid accidents, they told reporters recently, drivers must slow down. 

The thick smoke covering roads such as U.S. 395 is worrying troopers, local outlets reported. In addition to impacting the air quality, the smoke also made visibility a problem. For drivers, that means trouble. 

Much like driving through fog, driving through thick smoke requires the use of headlights, even during the daytime. But that alone won’t help to avoid crashes. 

Slowing down, troopers told reporters, will guarantee that drivers can avoid collisions, even if visibility is an issue. 

Despite their warnings, troopers told reporters that Washington drivers are still being careless. 

“I’m not sure if that’s just people in a hurry on the weekends or if people are losing a sense of their surroundings [because] they’re not able to see as far,” a trooper told KEPR. 

Regardless of what is making people think they can speed up, dust storms can lead to blackout conditions, the trooper added. To make sure you make home safe, slow down. 

Come Rain Or Come Shine, Washington Drivers Must Never Speed

In Washington state, we are often exposed to all different kinds of weather. This means that throughout the year, we deal with rain, snow, and even dust storms. With the west coast’s ongoing wildfires, we’re seeing an increase in thick smoke. As the winds pick up, the dust and smoke become dangerous to drivers across the state. 

Whatever the case, slowing down can help you prevent accidents.

Whether you’re traveling on ice-covered roads or driving through thick rain or smoke, respecting speed limits gives you enough time to act in case of an emergency. When you speed, on the other hand, you are more likely to lose control of your vehicle or fail to slow down or bring your car to a full stop if needed.

Next time you hit the road, follow the trooper’s recommendations and avoid speeding — it could save your life.