Car Accidents Cause By Inclement Weather
Nearly a fourth of all crashes occur during adverse weather conditions, including ice, snow, rain and fog, partially due to the fact that many drivers do not take poor weather into account when driving. Drivers fail to slow down or fail to increase the distance between themselves and other cars, causing additional hazards on the roadways. When big storms occur, many drivers will either slow to a dangerous crawl or drive as fast as they normally do—both of which can contribute to accidents caused by weather conditions. While snow and ice tend to scare drivers into simply staying home, rain is not generally considered “bad” weather, so more cars end up on wet roads, failing to slow down and consider the wet, slick pavement. Drivers should always remember that weather impacts a variety of factors, namely visibility, distance, vehicle performance and travel speeds. There are many things to consider if you are about to go out on a road which has been altered due to inclement weather.
Give Yourself More Time
It’s never a good idea to be running late when driving in bad weather, since this type of driving will naturally take longer, and will cause a greater amount of stress. Leave earlier than you normally would, and if you have a choice of routes, take the one which is least likely to be affected by the adverse weather. Always slow down during bad weather driving, and be hyper-vigilant to reduce the possibility of skidding out of control. Although tailgating is never a good idea under any weather conditions, it is an especially bad idea in bad weather conditions since your braking time will be much slower. Allow plenty of time to stop, and stay well away from the car in front of you.
Check Your Equipment
Your tires and brakes should always be checked regularly, especially during the winter months. Also, don’t put off replacing faulty windshield wipers until you are in the middle of a severe rainstorm as this could cause a serious injury. Take care to keep your headlights clean, and never, ever simply scrape a tiny area of ice from your windshield, hoping your defroster will kick in soon. Use your low beams when you are driving in foggy conditions; not only will you be able to see better, but other drivers will also have better visibility. Keep to the right side of the road, and anticipate other drivers who may inadvertently cross the line due to limited visibility.
Keep Your Seatbelt Buckled, and Pull Over When Necessary
Wearing your seatbelt is a law you should always follow, most especially when you are driving in bad weather conditions. Should you skid on a slick road, your seat belt may be the only thing which saves your life. If the weather conditions have come on suddenly and you are not prepared, pull over to a safe spot, completely off the road. It simply doesn’t make sense to continue to drive when poor visibility makes driving extremely dangerous, no matter how badly you think you need to be somewhere. If the bad weather involves heavy snow or a downpour of rain, make sure you are not pulling into a snow bank you won’t be able to get out of or a deep mucky puddle. Adhering to these safety tips can lessen the likelihood of injury to yourself or others, and if you have the option, simply stay home when the weather outside is dangerous.
Finally, remember that even if you are driving with all due caution, you can still be involved in an accident due to the negligence of another, and even if you are driving defensively, you may still be subject to road hazards such as unsalted roads, or no warning signs on icy roads or bridges. If you have suffered an automobile accident due to bad weather and/or the negligence of another, it’s important to hire a personal injury attorney who is highly experienced in this type of accident. After all, you don’t want to allow an accident caused by inclement weather conditions to haunt you for the remainder of your life.