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      Staying safe on snowy roads

      Accidents are a driverâ??s worst nightmare.

      According to the US Department of Transportation, on average 7,130 people are killed and over 629,000 injured in weather-related crashes every year.

      Houghton County Sheriff's Deputy Charlie Klein says drivers need to simply slow down.

      "People are driving too fast for conditions," stated Klein. "Also, tailgatingâ?| not giving themselves enough space between cars in front of them."

      "They're not able to stop in time if somebody brakes too quickly," the deputy added.

      A car needs four times the distance to stop on a snowy road compared to pavement. And, on ice itâ??s even worse. A car needs eight times the distance just to stop."

      Mark Keweenaw Research Center "If itâ??s 100 feet at a certain speed on ice itâ??ll be 800 feet," explained Mark Osborne, a program manager at the Keweenaw Research Centerâ??s test track.

      Osborne use to give lessons on winter driving so we asked him what to do if you're losing control.

      "If the car starts to fishtail, or spinout in the back, steer into the slide and stay lightly on the gas," Osborne explained. "It transfers weight to the rear tires to give it more grip."

      He also said to look where you want to go.

      "If they look at the snow bank they're going to end up in the snow bank," Osborne stated. "Your body helps you out. If you concentrate on where you want to go itâ??ll help you get there."

      Other tips include slowing down before turns and investing in snow tires and, the most important tip of all, always wear your seatbelt.

      Osborne says you can do everything right but in certain conditions a crash may be inevitable and that belt could possibly save your life.