A severe weather event occurred yesterday in Missoula and driving conditions rapidly deteriorated. As a result, there were multiple car crashes in the city. Police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh explains.

“Early on, we had requested that an "essential driving only" alert be passed out to the public due to those road conditions,” Welsh said. “As we look at those numbers today, we were able to determine that in a 24-hour period starting at 7:00 a.m. yesterday morning, the Missoula Police Department responded to approximately 50 crashes in the city of Missoula. That number includes both injury and non-injury crashes as well as reports of hit and runs occurring.”

According to Welsh, that "essential driving only" alert was lifted early Tuesday morning.

“However, we would caution drivers that it is still prudent to be cautious, to give yourself plenty of space and a good reactionary gap, drop your speed, and realize that everybody is trying to get some place. Be courteous to other drivers and get to your destination safely.”

Welsh says they want to avoid additional crashes and any injuries that might occur. It is important to remember that four-wheel drive does not mean four-wheel stop.