ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Weather in the Twin Tiers has been strange this winter, but snow and ice are back and experts are reminding drivers to take it easy.

On Wednesday, February 22nd, a large snow and ice storm has struck the Twin Tiers after a long stretch of above-average temperatures. The mixed precipitation in this storm can make conditions very dangerous while driving.

“One, you only have so much control over your own vehicle, but two, you have even less control over what other people are going to do,” said Mark Pellerito, Meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Binghamton. “So you just…you just need to be very cautious, allow plenty of stopping distance in front of you, and just take it easy.”

Drivers should also be aware of location, and how that can play a role in the weather. Higher elevations and bridges typically have more dangerous road conditions during the winter.

“If you’re down in the valley areas, that 800 to 900 foot level, the roads are gonna be much easier to drive on,” said Andrew Avery, Chemung County Director of Public Works. “But as you head home up into some of the developments or into the rural areas, you might be hitting that 1400 foot level where they’re talking about having as much as 4 inches of snow and wintry mix.”

Andrew Avery added even more tips for those who plan to drive during a winter storm. The tips are as follows:

  • Clear snow and ice from all windows and lights (even the hood and roof) before driving
  • Remember that posted speed limits are for dry pavement, and slow down in wet or slippery conditions
  • Leave room for maintenance vehicles and plows
  • Use brakes carefully by braking early and gradually applying pressure to the brakes
  • Don’t use your cruise control in wintry conditions. Even roads that appear clear can have sudden slippery spots.
  • Don’t become overconfident in all-wheel drive vehicles
  • Drive with your headlights on
  • Increase your scanning distance (look farther ahead) to provide yourself with extra time to react
  • Always fill the gasoline tank before entering areas with few gas stations
    • Keeping your tank as full as possible will minimize condensation, providing maximum advantage in case of trouble
  • Carry a cell phone
  • Stock your car with basic winter driving equipment: a scraper and brush, small shovel, jumper cables, tow chain, and a bag of sand or cat litter for tire traction
    • Include road flares, a blanket, heavy boots, warm clothing, and a flashlight with batteries
  • Know the current road and weather conditions
    • Check your route
    • Check road conditions
    • Allow extra time