The 2016-2017 winter in Salem, Oregon hit hard and it did not stop for an extended period of time. It seems like this would be nothing new for people from Oregon. However, what was new about this is the extended amount of time it actually stayed around. We are not talking about a few days, a week, but nearly two months of looking at the same snowfall and sometimes getting more of the same. Salem and surrounding cities around the state of Oregon became a frozen landscape and slowed down the productivity of everyone affected which was, honestly, just about anyone and everyone in Oregon.
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One of the biggest problems encountered was the speed at which the roads became slippery. The first of the trouble came a few hours before rush hour when everyone was still trying to get home to beat out the storm. Many drivers found themselves stuck in traffic when the snow touched down and it did not take long for it to become slick. A number of minutes one had to stay on the streets was a dramatic increase in how much danger someone would need to tolerate in order to get home. Of course, if you were one of those people stuck in that traffic, you had no choice. You had to go forward and you could not stop unless you really had to stop. Unfortunately, many people were forced to stop which led to abandoned vehicles that sat on the side of the road for days.
One of the things that might have been able to stop this from happening is chains and cables. However, the thing to keep in mind is that a person would have had to have had the foresight to put them on before leaving their work, home, or whatever it might have been. It also would have been illegal as you are not supposed to drive on chains or cables unless the roads are covered with snow and/or ice. The change from safe to dangerous literally took 10 to 20 minutes and there was no getting ready with those kinds of rules in place. A person would have to pull over and put those items on as quickly as possible.
Keep in mind that people only really have to put these on once a year which means that the skills and knowledge required to do such as an action are usually forgotten over the year. The last thing a person wants to do is sit in a vehicle or outside the vehicle to find instructions for how to put the chains or cables on the vehicle. The longer it takes to put chains or cables the harder it will be to put them on the vehicle.
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