Think Idahoans Can’t Drive in the Snow? It’s True
Tina's son has been itching to get back on the slopes and can't wait for the white stuff to dump on us. I, on the other hand, dread the day that snow arrives in the Treasure Valley.
When I tell people that I absolutely can't stand snow, their reactions are priceless. I normally get something like "you chose to live in Idaho, it snows here...get used to it" as a response. Excuse the giggles, but unlike a lot of your neighbors, I didn't move here from California. I grew up in the Snowbelt where it wasn't unusual to get 18+ inches of snow in a matter of two hours and still have school in the morning. Snow and driving in the snow isn't a new concept to me. My birthday falls in February, so the majority of my drivers ed hours were done in snow. Driving in the snow didn't really scare me...
...until I moved to Idaho! It seems when the white stuff flies here, everyone instantly forgets how to drive. That's why I drive white knuckled in the winter. It's not the snow that I'm afraid of, it's the drivers around me who don't know how to react. Well, it turns out those fearful feelings are well founded after all.
According to a new study done by Safewise, Idaho ranks as the fourth most dangerous state when it comes to driving in the snow! To determine our ranking, they looked at National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data from 2016 and found that there were 11 fatal snow crashes in the Gem State that year. They also used the NHTSA data to calculate the likelihood of getting in a snow related crash per 100,000 people in Idaho. In case you were wondering, it's .66%.
When it comes to snow driving, it's only more dangerous to drive in Wyoming, Vermont and Montana.
FYI, Snowpocalypse hit at the end of 2016, the year that Safewise used in their study. The amount of snowfall we received completely overwhelmed ACHD's fleet of 37 plows and 14 de-icing trucks. Across our area, Boise, Meridian, Nampa and Ontario all declared a "state of emergency" during Snowpocalypse clean-up efforts.
Perhaps, the influx of non-native Idahoans who've never driven in the snow (::cough:: Californians ::cough::) is the problem here? It's ok. One more Snowpocalypse and you'll be an expert at snow driving.