The winter season brings snow, ice, rain, and freezing temperatures in Oklahoma and other states in the country, which can create dangerous driving conditions. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, hazardous weather conditions cause over 1.3 million (22 percent) car accidents each year from 2007 to 2016.
The following are the most common dangers of winter driving:
- Wet and icy roads – Snow and rain make the roads slick, while ice forms when the roads are wet when the temperature drops below freezing. Since tires cannot maintain a good grip on icy and wet roads, drivers will experience steering and stopping difficulties that can lead to a serious collision.
- Visibility – Not only can freezing temperatures produce heavy snowfall, blinding rain, or dense fog that can make seeing difficult while driving, but it can also lead icy windows and mirrors that cannot be easily defrosted. Additionally, since daylight saving time is in effect, most motorists will be spending more time driving in the dark. Drivers often experience difficulties judging speeds and distances at night.
- Traffic – The holidays are a time for people to travel home to celebrate the season with loved ones, which is why the roads are busier than ever. However, increased traffic on the roads can lead to a rise in traffic collisions. Driving at low speeds in traffic can cause drivers to tailgate, become easily distracted, or engage in road rage, which are all conditions that can result in an accident.
- Car issues – If you haven’t changed your car battery in while, cold weather can impair an older battery’s ability to start the engine. Furthermore, cold temperatures can cause your tire pressure to drop by condensing the air within the tires, which means drivers must constantly check and inflate their tires accordingly.
To avoid getting involved in a car accident this winter, ensure your car is well-maintained and ready for the inclement weather. When the roads are wet or icy, drive slower than usual to improve maneuverability and better prepare yourself for unexpected road conditions. If you plan on taking a road trip, try to find the fastest and less-congested way to your destination and practice patience whenever you encounter traffic.
If you have been injured in a car accident in Norman, contact the Law Offices of Keith J. Nedwick, P.C. today at (866) 590-8173 and request a free meeting.