PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A winter storm blowing through the Midwest could bring snow just as holiday travelers hit the road for Thanksgiving.
“Bad weather can slow you down if you’re in a car, but if you’re flying, it certainly can bring things to a screeching halt, with airports closed, flights cancelled and that sort of thing. It’s not going to be a pleasant situation,” Robert Sinclair withAAA said.
According to AAA, 43.4 million people will be travelling in some form over the next week. The winter storm heading our way could turn holiday travel joy into holiday travel nightmares.
But, if you plan ahead, you could avoid some of the headaches.
Most will travel by car on Wednesday and if the roads are bad, what should you do?
“Your vehicle needs to be prepared for the rigors of the road. And the cold weather is a giant stress on a vehicle. The most popular items we get calls for at AAA is flat tires and dead batteries. And the temperature affects both. And at 30 degrees a battery loses about 30 percent of its power,” Sinclair said.
If you have to drive through stormy conditions, plan ahead. Get the car road and weather worthy and be prepared for cold weather, snow and ice.
“With tires, again when the temperature goes down, tires can lose pressure before hitting the road. It’s not the most convenient before hitting the road, when there’s bad weather and it’s cold, but it’s vitally important,” Sinclair said.
AAA said most road travelers will hit the road Wednesday afternoon between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., which could mean heavy traffic on top of changing road conditions. So, if possible, leave earlier, but driving overnight isn’t the recommended alternative.
“If you’re accustomed to being asleep during overnight hours, we have a tendency to drift off for two, three five or even ten seconds in what’s known as microsleep and at 65 mph, at ten seconds a lot of bad things can happen,” Sinclair said.