Sheriff’s Corner: Slow down, avoid hydroplaning
As I write this article, snow is falling at an ever-increasing rate. By the time you read this, it will hopefully be a distant memory and will have added itself to the local water table. Whether it is the melting of this storm, or the rainfalls we will eventually receive, some of that water will end up on our roadways. Just as dangerous as snow-covered roads can be pockets of water on the paved surfaces.
Such conditions will cause a driving experience know as hydroplaning. Anyone who has experienced this will agree that all steering and most braking ceases to exist, and in most cases is very difficult to regain control of until after the affected area is behind you. There are ways to avoid finding yourself in such a situation. As in any other degraded road condition, the best policy is to reduce your speed in both heavy rains, as well as heavy snows.
This is the part where I tell you that there is a law regarding your failure to reduce your speed when road conditions dictate. It’s called “Driving too fast for conditions” State Statute 346.57(3).
We have all been traveling down a road doing our best to be prudent in what we would consider bad weather when someone passes with what appears to be total disregard for their safety and others. If you find yourself in this situation where you feel someone is driving excessively fast, slow down to put more distance between your vehicle, their vehicle, and what will potentially be an accident they cause. If you find yourself passing other vehicles, ask yourself why are they driving so slow, and consider that there might be a reason for their caution.
I have said it before and I will say again. Just because a road is posted at a given speed, it does not mean that you have to match it. Based on conditions it is understandable, and yes, recommended, that you go slower.
Matt Joski is sheriff of Kewaunee County.
This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press Gazette: Sheriff's Corner: Slow down, avoid hydroplaning