Driver fined after failing to clear windshield of snow

It’s clear not everybody knows what to do when mixing snowy conditions with everyday driving.

However, some drivers choose to take it to a whole new level, resulting in a hefty fine for one South Kitsap driver.

The Washington State Patrol received a call Dec. 4 from a witness who noticed a vehicle being driven erratically on SR 16 south of Bremerton according to Trooper Heather Weatherwax.

The vehicle made it another five miles before being stopped by a trooper, who saw that the front windshield and top of the car was almost completely covered in snow.

The driver reportedly told the trooper the car’s windshield wipers weren’t working, seemingly in an attempt to justify driving the vehicle in its current condition.

The claim did not mean any less of a punishment, as the driver received a $553 ticket for negligent driving in the second degree.

Whether or not the law mandates Kitsap drivers clear snow from their vehicles, it’s seen as a basic common courtesy by drivers nationally. Snow left on the windshield or windows of a car can hinder the driver’s ability to see properly, increasing the chances of an accident. Snow on the top or back of a car can also fly off onto other vehicles, affecting other drivers and possibly damaging cars.

“Please take the time to remove all snow from your vehicle before you leave the house,” Weatherwax said.

Experts and members of law enforcement both recommend keeping an ice scraper in your car throughout the snowy season, the cost of which can be as little as one dollar. More expensive, but still cheap, scrapers have brushes attached that can be used to clear snow off the car with ease.