AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – In anticipation of the arctic air mass set to cover the High Plains on Thursday, the Texas Department of Transportation Amarillo District offered reminders focused on travel safety in winter weather.

TxDOT advised that drivers have their vehicles serviced ahead of winter weather events, including checking a vehicle’s battery, antifreeze level, brakes, wiper blades, lights, defroster, ignition, fuel and exhaust systems, and tires. Further, TxDOT suggested drivers keep certain emergency and weather-conscious items in vehicles such as:

  • Flares
  • Blankets
  • Warm clothes
  • A shovel and scraper
  • A flashlight and batteries
  • Candles
  • Sterno flame
  • A lighter and matches
  • First-aid kit
  • Booster cables
  • Non-perishable food and water

TxDOT also suggested drivers keep safe distances between vehicles to prepare for gusts in windy conditions and drive more slowly to offer more time to react to sudden changes and events.

For those needing to pull over due to fatigue or weather conditions, TxDOT suggested drivers pause at regional Travel Information Centers and Rest Areas.

Other safety tips from TxDOT included:

  • Drivers should build in extra time for travel in case of delays, and practice patience while sharing the road;
  • Drivers should move over a lane to create a safe margin of space when passing a vehicle parked on the side of the road;
  • Drivers should never drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
  • Drivers should be sure that everyone in the vehicle, including themselves, are properly wearing a seatbelt.

The latest information on highway conditions from TxDOT can be tracked here. Further, the latest forecast, weather alerts, and live radar information can be found on MyHighPlains.com.