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Motorists urged to prepare for winter driving season

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Chris Caya/WBFO News
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Though mild fall weather is expected to continue for the next several days, the New York Department of Transportation is reminding motorists to be prepared for the upcoming winter driving season.

Tips include adjusting speed to the conditions, maintaining a safe distance from vehicles in front, allowing extra time to get to your destination, and not passing snow plows. 

Acting Regional Director Darrell Kaminski recommends creating an emergency blizzard kit including sand, a shovel, flares, booster cables, rope, an ice scraper, portable radio, flashlight, blankets, and a set of warm clothing.

DOT Regional Director of Operations Charlie Morgante says passing a working plow is a bad idea.  

"When you get in front of a snow plow, the road in front of that snow plow has not been treated," Morgante said at a Monday morning news conference. "As people start to cross from one lane to another, there are chances for a spinout."

Before heading out on the highway, drivers are also reminded that they can check road conditions and get real-time traffic information by dialing 511 or by going online to 511NY.org.