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High winds are causing ISP to urge caution on highways

High winds we’re getting doesn’t only ruin your hair; it can also be dangerous. Flying debris and dust storms are hazards, and wind can also make for high-risk driving.

Wind speeds from 25 to 35 mph, with gusts up to 50, are affecting thousands of people in the region. Although it won’t tear your roofs off, it can create dangerous conditions on the road.

“The same things you got to do when it’s snowing or raining, you got to do when there’s high winds.,” Idaho State Police, Lt. Mike Winans said. “What we see are people aren’t driving according to the conditions, and they lose control of their vehicle. It’s important for people to pay attention and always maintain control of their vehicles.”

For larger vehicles such as semitrailers, the risks are even higher.

“What I find is people take a lot of time in what is called the ‘no-zone,'” Winans said.

No Zones are areas around large vehicles where crashes are more likely to happen, based on the trucker’s blind spots.

“If it’s really windy and there are crosswinds, that trailer might move around in its lane a little bit and if you’re hanging out there all day, that’s a problem,” Winans said.

As the winds continue through Thursday and Friday, ISP is also urging drivers to keep both hands on the wheel, even though that’s not required by law.

“Everyone’s got a cellphone. They need to drop the cellphone. They need to pay attention to what they’re doing and that would require two hands on the wheel and total attention to the roadway ahead of you,” Winans said.

ISP is also asking the public to report any trees or debris on the highways by calling (208) 239-9800.

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