Drivers lose control on rain-slick I-5

Pictured is a crash scene after a driver lost control on a slick roadway due to recent rains. Taken on Interstate-5 going northbound near milepost 70. (Courtesy Oregon Department of Transportation)

At least three drivers have lost control of their cars Friday afternoon on the Interstate-5 summits north of Grants Pass.

The Oregon Department of Transportation and emergency crews have responded to each one.

Thundershowers in the region have brought up pavement oils and grime making the road slick for vehicles going either too fast for the conditions or with poor tire tread.

Motorists are reminded to drive to the conditions and take note of the following tips:

- Watch for hydroplaning conditions. If you hydroplane, ease off the gas, gently apply the brakes and steer straight ahead.

- Keep your distance. If it hasn’t rained in a while, road surfaces will be slick.

- Turn on your headlights to improve visibility.

- Disengage your cruise control.

- Slow down, especially through high water. Driving through several inches of water at high speed can cause you to lose control of the car.

- Check your wipers for signs of damage. Replace wiper blades regularly.

- Check your brakes. After driving through a puddle, check that brakes are working properly by tapping them gently a few times.

- Make sure tires are in good condition and are at the recommended inflation level. Tires should have a recommended 2/32 of an inch tread depth at any two adjacent grooves. Driving on over-inflated or under-inflated tires reduces traction and control on wet pavement.

- Make sure your defroster is functioning properly, especially if you haven’t used it in a while.

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