South Island Advisory – ice on West Coast highways, take care advises Transport Agency

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJune 28, 2018

Rahu Saddle near Reefton today:

West Coast highways are icing up night and mornings in particular in many places currently and all drivers are encouraged to take care.

The Transport Agency‘s road crews main concerns are in South Westland, SH6, and SH7 Reefton to Springs Junction but ice remains likely for the whole of the  West Coast until Sunday when some rain is forecasted, says Margarita Gonzalez-Borrero, Maintenance Contract Manager for the Tranpsort Agency on the West Coast .

 Key tips to keep you safe in icy conditions:

•            Go slow on ice or snow.

•            Allow for much greater braking distances, avoid braking suddenly.

•            Look out for shaded areas caused by shelter belts/ tall trees where the roads freeze sooner and ice                  may not thaw during the day.

•            Bridges could also stay slippery longer than other road surfaces.

•            Frost is more severe at daybreak, so be prepared for this after it becomes light. While it may not be                  icy at 6am, it could be an hour or two later.

•            Allow greater following distances.

•            Motorists still need to be very careful, even if roads are covered with grit, which offers a 40 per cent                improvement in skid resistance.

•            Is your journey really necessary? Observe road warnings and allow extra time for your journey.

•            Black ice, sometimes called clear ice, refers to a thin coating of glazed ice on a surface. The typically                 low levels of noticeable ice pellets, snow, or sleet surrounding black ice means that areas of the ice                  are often practically invisible to drivers.