Tasmanian Times

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‘Black ice’ a deadly factor on Tasmania’s roads in winter

With temperatures starting to dip overnight, motorists are urged to be mindful of black ice and to stay vigilant while driving in wet and frosty conditions.
RACT Insurance CEO Trent Sayers said 2016 claims data revealed a 13 per cent increase in claims involving black ice compared to 2015.
Mr Sayers said it was concerning to see these figures and RACT Insurance is now calling on motorists to take extra care on the roads during the colder months ahead.
“Winter has always been a dangerous period for motorists and I can’t stress enough the need for Tasmanians to drive to the conditions – a message also communicated regularly by our police and emergency services,” Mr Sayers said.
Mr Sayers said in the south of the state, roads such as the Huon Highway, Southern Outlet, Channel Highway and Nichols Rivulet Road were particularly prone to ice during the winter months which could make driving conditions incredibly dangerous.
“The combination of overnight rain and cold mornings can be a recipe for disaster, not just in the south but across the entire state,” he said.
“Motorists need to be aware of how much sun exposure a road is likely to get during the day. If wet roads don’t dry out they could freeze overnight causing black ice in the morning.
“In the interests of safer motoring for all road users, it is the responsibility of all Tasmanians to ensure their vehicles comply with basic vehicle safety standards.
“There are a number of things you can do to ensure your vehicle is winter-ready such as ensuring tyres have enough tread, checking that windscreen wipers are in good condition, and making sure lights are all working.
“Motorists should also have their brakes and indicators checked, and most importantly, if there is a problem they should have it looked at immediately by a mechanic.
“Winter is also a timely reminder that when driving in wet or icy conditions, drivers need to leave more than the recommended two-second gap between their vehicle and the vehicle in front, and instead leave a three to four second gap or more.”
RACT Insurance CEO Trent Sayers

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