Bad weather and driving are not a good combination. Although modern cars can handle most weather conditions relatively well, there are several potential dangers to consider when the skies darken or ice coats the roads.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, of the more than 5 million crashes that occur in the United States annually, up to 23 percent involve poor weather conditions. Weather can have a serious impact on road safety because it may reduce visibility, cause obstructions and even submerge lanes.
Driving in poor weather does not have to be treacherous – especially if you follow a few basic safety tips. Unfortunately, you can’t always rely on other drivers to do the same.
If you sustained injuries in a collision, contact Morris Bart, LLC. A Baton Rouge personal-injury lawyer can determine if you may have valid grounds for a claim. Call us today at 1-800-537-8185 to schedule an appointment, and keep the following tips in mind the next time you head out in poor weather:
- Stay Focused
According to Distraction.gov, distracted driving is one of the main causes of crashes in the United States. Distracted driving during poor weather is particularly dangerous. There are likely to be additional obstacles and hazards to consider in inclement weather, and certain distractions, such as checking your cellphone or changing the radio station, can be enough to lose control of your vehicle.
- Abide by Warning Signs
Always adhere to official warning signs and detours during periods of heavy rain. This is particularly important when crossing bridges.
Even a thin layer of water across the roadway can be enough to sweep your vehicle off a bridge. Trust law enforcement officials, and always take the safest route.
- Maintain Your Tires
Your tires serve as a crucial piece of safety equipment, particularly during poor weather conditions. According to SaferCars.org, it is important that your tires are always at the correct pressure and have adequate tread. If your tire pressure is low or you have inadequate tread, there is an increased risk of hydroplaning over the road’s surface.
- Reduce Speed
The most important safety tip to follow when poor weather rolls in is reducing your speed. Take your car out of cruise control, and slow down to a safe and manageable speed. This will give you additional time to avoid obstacles or hazards.
If you have to brake suddenly in wet weather, avoid doing so sharply. Feather your breaks, and steer in the direction that you wish to go. Do not panic, and you may be able to avoid an uncontrolled skid.
A bit of patience and extra attention during poor weather can save your life, but nobody can control the actions of negligent drivers. At Morris Bart, LLC, we know that even the most cautious drivers still get into collisions.