Fall in New England. It can be sunny and warm one day and bitter cold and snowing the next. It’s also the perfect time to begin preparing for snowy and icy roads. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of fatalities in winter storms. There are steps you can take to significantly reduce your risk of serious injury or death in a weather-related auto accident. Some of these steps involve specific behaviors, such as defensive driving, while others involve preparing the vehicle itself. Read on for tips to make your winter driving experiences safe and enjoyable. Contact a Boston injury lawyer for more information.
Safe Driving Tips for Winter
- Prepare your vehicle for winter travel. Make sure headlights are working, and that brakes and tires are in good working order.
- Stock your trunk with emergency supplies, such as a flashlight, bottled water, blankets, and flares.
- Before leaving on any trip, whether your destination is eight hours away or just around the corner, familiarize yourself with weather conditions. Listen to the radio for announcements about road closings, accidents, and weather advisories.
- Plan your route before you leave, and tell someone the route you are taking. This way, if you become stranded, your family or friends can tell authorities where you are most likely to be.
- Refrain from slamming on the brakes, taking sharp turns, and making sudden movements. Drive slowly enough that you can brake carefully and anticipate turns, lane changes, and stops.
- On the other hand, don’t drive too If there is heavy snow on the roadways, you will need to keep up the momentum in order to push through and avoid becoming stuck.
- Always remember that bridges freeze first. Before reaching any bridge, slow down and avoid sudden lane changes, slamming on the brakes, or accelerating too quickly.
- Avoid large trucks as much as possible. Trucks are significantly heavier than cars and they need ample room for coming to stops. Additionally, truck tires often spray snow and rain, which can further reduce visibility.
- Although four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive vehicles are the safest option in adverse weather conditions, don’t get overly confident. These types of vehicles are actually heavier than their two-wheel drive counterparts. While the increased traction helps your car get going again after a stop, it does not increase your ability to brake.
- When rain, snow, and fog are present, always keep your headlights on. This allows you to see more clearly and makes your vehicle more visible to other drivers.
- Driving in adverse weather conditions is inherently risky. The best way to avoid weather-related accidents is to avoid driving when conditions are bad. Unfortunately, this is not always possible. If, however, you utilize safe driving practices and have taken the necessary steps to prepare your vehicle, you can substantially reduce your risk of serious injury or death.
Altman & Altman, LLP – New England’s Premier Motor Vehicle Accident Law Firm
Our legal team has been protecting the rights of accident and injury victims for nearly 50 years. If you have been involved in an auto accident, we can help. You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and transportation costs. Time is of the essence with motor vehicle accident cases. Our highly skilled lawyers will position you for the best possible outcome in your unique situation. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free consultation about your case.