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Icy roads trigger crashes

Eleven collisions reported

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When responding to icy road conditions, both government entities and drivers have to do their part to help prevent accidents.

City and town Public Works staff watch the weather to predict when ice will form, according to Apple Valley spokesperson Kathie Martin. When there is likely to be ice, Public Works staff proactively spread cinders overnight and then work with the Sheriff’s Department throughout the day to spread cinders and place “ICY” signs wherever they are needed.

Caltrans also spreads cinders on major state highways, such as the Interstate 15, according to CHP spokesperson Joaquin Zubieta.

As cities and the county prepare to make the roads safer, drivers can also take steps to prevent accidents when roads are icy. Follow these tips from the CHP to stay safe on the road:

• Make sure brakes, windshield wipers, defroster, heater and exhaust system are working

• Check antifreeze

• Make tires are properly inflated and the treat is in good condition.

• Always carry chains, an ice scraper, and a broom for brushing off snow.

• Carry extra water, food, warm blankets, and extra clothing in case of a delay.

• Allow extra time to get to your destination

• Keep gas tank full

• Keep windshield and windows clear of snow, stopping to scrape when necessary

• Drive slower and leave a greater following distance

• Watch for bridges and shady areas that may have ice when other places may not

• Call CALTRANS at (800) 427-7623 to check highway conditions

Icy roads contributed to at least 11 collisions across the High Desert on Monday morning, including two collisions on the Hesperia Road overpass, officials said.

At approximately 6 a.m., a vehicle traveling west on Main Street lost control on Hesperia Road and went into a lateral skid, according to San Bernardino County Sheriff ’s spokesperson Sue Rose. The vehicle jumped the curb on the west side of the bridge and rolled twice down the side, striking a fence and two vehicles in a car lot below, Rose said.

The driver, who was wearing a seat belt, complained of pain but had no serious injuries.

“This collision is a lesson to wear a seat belt,” Rose said. “Had the person not been wearing a seat belt, he would have been ejected.”

At 7:07 a.m., a second collision occurred on the Hesperia Road overpass, this time involving three vehicles, Rose said. Due to the icy conditions, one vehicle lost control and traveled into the opposing lane, striking two vehicles in that lane.

No one was injured in the collision, Rose said. Main Street was closed until 8:30 a.m. while deputies cleared the road and towed the vehicles.

“This is a reminder to drive for conditions and not just the posted limit,” Rose said, noting that the overpass was especially icy.

Several collisions were reported throughout the High Desert on Monday morning. In Apple Valley, five single-vehicle collisions occurred between 6 and 8:30 a.m. where ice was a factor, according to sheriff’s spokesperson Theresa McMahon.

The California Highway Patrol also reported three collisions early Monday morning, one on Highway 138 and two on Phelan Road, according to CHP spokesperson Joaquin Zubieta.

Many of these collisions could have been prevented if people drove more slowly in icy conditions, Zubieta said. He noted that ice does not cause collisions, but icy roads can be contributing factors, especially when people drive unsafely.

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