Alger County Road Commission offers snowbank safety tips

WETMORE — ‘Tis the season for snowbank danger. Snowbanks are forming all across the U.P. They can attract the attention of children playing outdoors, but they can be dangerous.

When the snow begins to fall, the Alger County Road Commission visits local schools to educate kids about what they can do to stay safe when the snow starts to pile up. They present a number of safety tips that can benefit the children throughout the winter months.

“If you’re going to play outside, stay away from the road,” Alger County Road Commission maintenance truck driver Steve Downing said. “If you’re going to stand out for the school bus, don’t stand on snow banks, where you might fall down out into traffic. No throwing snowballs at traffic or people plowing or anything like that. Don’t build any forts near the shoulder of the road.”

Building snow forts too close to the road can pose a significant danger because kids inside may not be able hear or see plows coming, and vice versa. Those who build forts in a safe part of their yard are also advised not to build them with roofs, as these can collapse.

Drivers can do their part to help keep winter safe by giving plows and sanding trucks plenty of space in which to work. If they need to pull onto the shoulder, drivers should make sure that they keep their lights on, as this will help plow drivers see them.