Authorities in Finland have issued a warning to drivers about the risk posed by large puddles of water on roads caused by a large amount of melting snow, also known as snowmelt.
There were at least two traffic accidents caused by water-covered roads in the eastern municipality of Kuopio reported on Friday.
Both the police and the ELY Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment issued warnings about the dangers posed by water-soaked roads.
Driving on excessively wet roads increases the risk of hydroplaning, which is when a vehicle's tyres lose their grip on the road and slide along a film of water on top of the surface — a situation which dramatically reduces a driver's ability to steer and brake.
Local ELY Centre project manager Markku Honkimaa said that according to wintertime road maintenance rules, meltwater should be kept from causing problems on roadways.
He said blockages to roadside drainage culverts must be prevented and piles of melting snow needs to be moved to avoid flooding of roads.
Drivers can report problematic road conditions to the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency by telephone, at 0200 2100, a line which is open daily, 24 hours a day. That information will be then forwarded to local authorities who will look at how to address the issue, according to Honkimaa.
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