Fog, smoke may limit I-75 visibility


Published: Thursday, January 10, 2008 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 10, 2008 at 12:00 a.m.

The Florida Highway Patrol warned motorists that fog and smoke from a controlled burn in northern Alachua County could limit visibility on roads including Interstate 75 early today.

A controlled burn had been held earlier in the week on 17 acres near County Road 241 and CR 236, north of Alachua, said Alachua County Fire Rescue spokeswoman Megan Crandall.

But residual smoke lingering in the area could mix with fog, causing visibility problems for motorists, said FHP spokesman Lt. Mike Burroughs.

Dense fog has been forecast for in Alachua County through the morning until about 9 a.m., the National Weather Service in Jacksonville advised.

FHP also provided safety tips when traveling roads where smoke and fog are present:

Drive with lights on low beam. High beams will only be reflected back off the smoke and impair visibility more.

Slow down. Speed is considered a major factor in smoke-related crashes.

Watch for slow-moving or parked vehicles.

Reduce distractions by turning off the radio and cell phone.

Use windshield wipers and defrosters to improve visibility.

Be patient, and avoid passing or changing lanes.

Signal turns well in advance and brake early.

Do not stop on a freeway or heavily traveled road. A motorist who must pull off the road should use a turn signal, carefully pull off the road as far as possible and then put on hazard flashers.

Lise Fisher can be reached at 352-374-5092 or fisherl@gvillesun.com.

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