Black ICE and Angeles National Forrest

Dominic Carone
May 21, 2024

**Beware of Black Ice: A Winter Warning from Montrose Search and Rescue**

As winter blankets the Angeles National Forest with its icy grip, the Montrose Search and Rescue team urges all travelers to be aware of one silent, treacherous danger: black ice.

Black ice, a thin layer of transparent ice that forms on roads and highways, is often invisible to the naked eye, especially at night or in shaded areas. This deceptive hazard can turn a routine drive into a perilous journey within seconds.

The cold temperatures and frequent snowfall in the forest create ideal conditions for black ice to form, particularly on bridges, overpasses, and shaded curves. Even experienced drivers can be caught off guard by its presence.

So, what can you do to stay safe?

1. **Slow Down:** Reduce your speed when driving in cold or snowy conditions, especially on unfamiliar roads.

2. **Increase Distance:** Leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you to allow for ample braking distance.

3. **Stay Alert:** Watch for signs of black ice, such as a glossy appearance on the road surface or sudden loss of traction.

4. **Avoid Abrupt Movements:** Steer gently and avoid sudden braking or accelerating, as these actions can cause loss of control on icy roads.

5. **Use Winter Tires:** Equip your vehicle with winter tires for improved traction and stability on slippery surfaces.

6. **Be Prepared:** Carry emergency supplies in your vehicle, including blankets, food, water, and a flashlight, in case you become stranded.

By taking these precautions and remaining vigilant, you can reduce the risk of encountering black ice and ensure a safer journey through the Angeles National Forest this winter.

Remember, it’s better to arrive at your destination a few minutes later than to risk a dangerous encounter with black ice. Stay safe,

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Dominic Carone
May 21, 2024

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