State Troopers provide safety tips for drivers ahead of severe weather

The National Weather Service has forecasted severe weather in parts of Alabama on Monday, with thunderstorms possibly producing damaging straight-line winds and large hail.

Link:{} Get the latest information on severe weather from the ABC 33/40 Weather Blog

Col. Hugh B. McCall, director of the Alabama Department of Public Safety and the state's highest-ranking state trooper, urges motorists to be more cautious on roadways and to avoid driving if possible. Those who must drive should remember the following safety tips:In high winds: Be aware of other vehicles on the roadway. High winds are more problematic for drivers of trucks, buses and RVs, as well as drivers who are towing trailers.

Reduce speed, especially when moving from a protected area to an unprotected area, or when meeting large vehicles.

Look for slick areas as heavy rain often accompanies wind. In severe thunderstorms:Listen to radio for information on approaching storms.

Turn on headlights (low beams) and slow down.

Allow extra distance for braking.

Pull safely onto the shoulder of the road away from any trees that could fall on the vehicle.

In heavy rain, stay in car and turn on emergency flashers until rain subsides.

Avoid flooded roadways.

Avoid downed power lines.

Approach intersections with caution. For emergencies along Alabama's roadways, motorists may dial 911 for assistance; or dial *HP (*47) on cell phones to reach the nearest Alabama State Trooper post. Motorists also may visit the Alabama Department of Transportation's website for information on Alabama road conditions and more.