In Maine, Black Ice Can Still Form on the Road Above 32 Degrees
Black ice is the worst, and it hides everywhere.
I have to admit, I've been guilty of this myself. I've noticed the air temperature outside is say, 35 degrees. And maybe the road is a bit damp in spots. In my oblivious mind, I assumed if the air temp is over 32, then the roads must be good to go, right? Not so fast...
Really, it all depends on what the road temperature is, more so than the air. Sure, the air matters, but if there's been a steady stream of cold, the ground may take longer to warm up than the air. So it's definitely something you want to consider...
I remembered a Facebook post from the Maine DOT reminding us otherwise.
Admit it.... we've all done it. And up to now, got away with it.
It makes sense. Sure the air temp might be 35 degrees. But what if the ground temp is below 32? Then you bet your bottom dollar, the water on the road is likely to form black ice. And being Mainers our whole lives, we've been having the evil of black ice drilled into our heads since we were kids. Amirite?!
So it's a good thing to consider as you're about to head to work, or to the store or whatnot. If it's a wee bit on the chilly side, and the ground is pretty well frozen, take it easy on roads that may 'look' damp. They could be slicker than you realize. As fun as it looks on TV, flying through the air in a car is not ideal.
Be safe, slow down, and leave five minutes earlier. My grandfather would always wag a grizzled old finger at people who were speeding past him, especially in the wintertime. He'd always talk about the poor fella that should've just left ten minutes earlier. It's sage advice we should all use this time of year....
By the way, do you have a name for that weird chunk of ice in your wheel well?
What's That Chunky Ice In Your Wheels Called?
Gallery Credit: Jason Stewart