Federal highway data shows wrecks caused by black ice cause more than 116,000 injuries, and kill 1300 people each year.
Jamie Hornbaker of State Farm Insurance visited 13 News at 4 with some common-sense reminders about the danger posed on the roads this time of year.
Warning signs of black ice:
· Absence of water spray on a seemingly wet road
· Cars suddenly swerving or skidding
· Brake lights ahead
· Cars or tire tracks in the ditch shiny surfaces next to a dull black
Stay calm and do not panic if you hit black ice
· Do nothing: avoid making sudden moves or turning the wheel.
· Smoothly lift your foot off the accelerator and glide across the ice in a straight line until you find traction.
· Shift: if possible, slowly shift to a lower gear for added control.
· Brake wisely: if you begin to skid, firmly press on your brakes to activate the anti-lock brake system (ABS).
or, if you don't have abs, pump the brakes gently.
· Avoid spinout: if your front end is sliding, steer in the opposite direction of the skid; if the back end is sliding, steer in the same direction.
· Look toward where you want to go: avoid looking where you think you might crash—you might inadvertently veer the car in that direction.
Avoid potential for accidents with these preventative measures:
· Check road conditions before you travel.
· Slow down and don't tailgate.
· Never use cruise control when road conditions are uncertain or changing.
· Use snow tires.
· Don't rely on all-wheel drive for ice—it won't help you gain traction.
Tips from State Farm Insurance