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  • Writer's picturezelechowski mathieu

Black Ice On Courchevel Roads

Updated: Jan 5, 2020

Last night I ended my physio osteopath day really late. Getting access to the most beautiful chalets in Courchevel is a bless and pleasure for my eyes, I m meeting people from all over the world. Therefore i don’t mind working long hours usually late at night. To be on time I m driving a jeep 4x4 equiped with 4 snow tyres, and we say in Courchevel it climbs trees !!

I’ve done 14 seasons here and i ve experienced the worst driving conditions here. But yesterday was the really worst roads conditions ever. I had to go at night time from cheval blanc hotel to a chalet in Plantrey sector, the temperature has been quite high during the day and snow was melting, leaving a thin layer of water rushing down. Then suddenly the skies started to clear and temperature dropped fast. The layer of water on the roads started to freeze up quick, at around 22:00 the game was over Courchevel 1850 roads were covered with what we call here “black ice”. Black ice because you can’t see it and it’s the hardest form of ice you can find.

I saw car crashes everywhere, my jeep was sliding like a sledge and as I was loosing grip even with snow tyres, I had to drive at a maximum speed of 10 kilometers an hour.

There’s only 2 way to deal with such dangerous conditions : reduce speed to a maximum of 10 k an hour, put your warning flashing light on to tell other motorists that there’s trouble, and don’t use the brakes ever !!. Control the speed and brake with your gear box, once your wheels are blocked you loose grip and your car stats to slide. And at least anticipate the momentum of your car as much as you can. Drive safe !! Last night was a real nightmare to drive home and the worst roads condition I’ve ever seen. I m sure garages got a lot of jobs today.

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