Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - I’m sure everyone who was on the road over the past weekend heard an unusual number of sirens from various emergency vehicles as they raced to weather-related accidents around western Montana.

There were 71 Weather Related Crashes over the Weekend in Western Montana

KGVO News spoke to Montana Highway Patrol Public Information Officer Sergeant Jay Nelson on Monday who put actual numbers to the human drama of people involved in weather-related traffic accidents over the weekend.

“It was definitely busy both at the stadiums across the state both MSU and U of M and then traveling to and from,” began Sergeant Nelson. “We ended up in the Missoula area for your listeners with a total of 71 motor vehicle crashes Saturday and into Sunday. As part of those 71 accidents, 10 of which were injury accidents, so by the far majority was just the fender benders and slide-offs.”

MHP Advice? Slow Down, Don't Drink and Drive and Wear your Seal Belts

Nelson repeated the Highway Patrol mantra for those traveling on snow-covered and icy roads; slow down and wear your seat belts.

“The biggest thing is just planning for the worst,” he said. “We all understand that we're back into winter driving mode. You're not going to stop as quick; you're going to slide, and you're going to have changing road conditions.”

MHP Says Make Sure your Vehicle is Equipped for Winter Driving

Nelson added that it is incumbent on every driver to make sure their vehicle is in good repair and equipped for winter driving.

“The advice is the same, making sure your vehicle is in good proper order; making sure you slow the speed down give more following distance; slow the speed down; make sure you always put your seat belt on and don't get behind the wheel if you're impaired,” he said. “Just enjoy the winter and what it has to bring for our great state.”

Nelson said there were no fatalities reported from weather-related crashes in western Montana over the weekend.

LOOK: Most dangerous states to drive in

Stacker used the Federal Highway Administration's 2020 Highway Statistics report to rank states by the fatalities per billion miles traveled. 

Gallery Credit: Katherine Gallagher

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