Know the Road with the CHP: Preparing for snow and chain control

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- When the CHP implements chain control, what does that mean? Do you always have to have chains on?

"So we have three levels of chain control: R1, R2 and R3," said Sgt. Brian Pennings with the California Highway Patrol. "R1 requires you to carry chains with you. However, you don't have to have chains on your vehicle, as long as your vehicle is equipped with what we call snow tires."

"R2 requires you to carry chains with you, but you do not have to have them on, as long as you have snow tires and four-wheel drive," he said. "R3 requires all vehicles, regardless of whether you are two-wheel or four-wheel drive or whether you have snow tires, every vehicle has to have chains."

"If you encounter a situation where you have to put chains on your vehicle, the chains go on the drive axle of your vehicle. For instance, if your vehicle is rear-wheel drive, your chains will go on the rear tires. If your vehicle is front-wheel drive, they will go on the front tires."

"Make sure you park in designated locations and make sure you play in designated areas," Pennings said. "We ask you to please slow down and be very careful as you traverse through the snow play areas. There's oftentimes families playing with young children entering the roadway as they're getting in and out of the vehicles. The snow and ice in the roadway greatly decreases your ability to stop your vehicle."

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