Tips for driving in smokey areas


Wildfires in Gatlinburg, Tenn. and other nearby areas have damaged or destroyed hundreds of buildings and structures forcing thousands of residents and visitors in the area to be evacuated.

“Heavy smoke in the affected areas can also be dangerous for drivers,” said Cindy Antrican, a AAA spokeswoman.

>>RELATED: Gatlinburg wildfires claim 3 lives

If you are planning to travel to the Gatlinburg area, AAA makes the following recommendations:

  • Contact your travel agent, hotel or property management office to ensure lodging is available.
  • Check local media for updates.
  • Check with local emergency management officials and adhere strictly to all evacuation orders.
  • Learn the recommended evacuation route.
  • Pack an emergency kit.
  • Let someone know your plans.

“Fog and smoke appear to play a major role in fatal multi-vehicle pileups, and are listed as a factor in nearly one-in-five crashes involving 10 or more vehicles,” Antrican said pointing to a AAA traffic safety report. “In addition fog-involved crashes resulted in more serious injuries than crashes in clear visibility conditions.”

According to the study, smoke- and fog-related fatal crashes are highest between midnight and 5:59 a.m. and 6 to 11:59 a.m. when the temperature is generally coolest and water vapors can condense into droplets – creating foggy conditions. These are times when visibility is generally already compromised due to poor lighting. Fog- and smoke-related crashes are greater in rural areas.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

A first-of-its-kind Ohio program offers thousands of free training courses from libraries
A first-of-its-kind Ohio program offers thousands of free training courses from libraries

Ohio will be the first state to expand its online library learning program statewide, allowing any Ohioan with a valid library card to take thousands of small, free online courses, whether for fun or to bolster a work resume. While some of the software tutorials and job interviewing videos take a matter of minutes, the system also offers numerous structured...
Marine son stationed overseas surprises firefighter father for his birthday
Marine son stationed overseas surprises firefighter father for his birthday

A Marine stationed in Norway traveled around the globe to surprise his father in South Carolina on his birthday. The two reunited in an emotional moment at Friday’s celebration for Perry Clanton, an assistant volunteer fire chief, in Lancaster, South Carolina. Family and friends gathered for the occasion at the Buford Fire and Rescue building...
'I'm just lost': Relatives talk about losing 9 family members in duck boat accident
'I'm just lost': Relatives talk about losing 9 family members in duck boat accident

A metro Atlanta man told WSBTV that he is “just lost” after losing nine of his relatives in a duck boat accident on Missouri’s Table Rock Lake on Thursday. “I don’t know. I can’t place it. I can’t imagine it,” Gary Coleman told WSBTV. “We’ve had a death in the family — one or two...
Captain said not to worry about life jackets before deadly duck boat crash, survivor says
Captain said not to worry about life jackets before deadly duck boat crash, survivor says

A woman who lost nine family members when a duck boat capsized in Missouri’s Table Rock Lake on Thursday said the captain of the boat told passengers not to worry about life jackets before the accident. Tia Coleman was one of the 11 members of the Coleman family to board the duck boat Thursday, according to WXIN-TV. She told the TV station that...
4-Hers celebrate Clark County bicentennial in booths, barns
4-Hers celebrate Clark County bicentennial in booths, barns

Clark County 4-H clubs are decorating for a birthday, and fairgoers are invited to celebrate, too. Barns throughout the fairgrounds as well as 4-H booths in the Clark County Fair’s Youth Building will be decorated in recognition of Clark County’s 200th birthday, said Patty House, the 4-H youth development educator for Clark County&rsquo...
More Stories