Snow squalls could mean dangerous driving conditions tonight

Last year, snow squall caused 40-car pileup
Snow squalls could mean dangerous roads
Snow squalls could mean dangerous roads
Snow squalls could mean dangerous roads
Posted at 1:14 PM, Dec 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-29 17:10:37-05

CINCINNATI – If you've never driven in a snow squall or don't know what it is, the video and photos above should tell you it's dangerous.

They show a 40-car pileup on Interstate 74 in Indiana last year that resulted from a snow squall. With snow squalls in the forecast Thursday night, drivers need to beware because you might not have time to react.

"Sometimes you can't help it, it comes in so fast," says Michael Bachman, a fleet manager for AAA.

READ MORE: Your latest forecast

"A snow squall is an intense, short-lived burst of heavy snowfall that leads to a quick reduction in visibility and is often accompanied by gusty winds," according to the National Weather Service.

The 9 First Warning weather team first warned you of Thursday's chance for snow squalls earlier this week.  Our greatest chance for squalls is between 6 p.m. and 3 a.m.

The snow squall can quickly turn into a half-inch to 1 inch of snow. The entire Tri-State will not see an even blanket of light snow; it will just accumulate where the squalls move through.

Drivers encountering near white-out conditions should pump your brakes lightly, turn on hazard lights or pull over. Snow squalls often lead to wrecks on our interstates.

That was the case on I-74 last year. Six people were injured when 40 mph wind gusts and snow combined.

Drivers never saw it coming.

"You really just want to make sure you slow down, take your time," Bachman said. "The  biggest thing [is] don't be in a rush. That's when accidents happen."

Bachman advises that you never get out of your car.

"If you can pull over and be safe, that's great. But the best thing to do is stay in your car no matter what," Bachman said.

You can always stay up-to-date on the latest Tri-State forecast at