Each year, thousands of people sustain injuries through accidents in snowy and icy conditions. The US Department of Transportation estimates that over 1,300 people get killed every year due to auto accidents in winter.
Generally, driving in winter is more dangerous than other times of the year due to the threats of storms, ice, fallen trees, and other misfortunes. However, drivers can take the following steps to improve their safety during winter.
1. Check Weather and Traffic Reports
Be sure to regularly check weather reports before heading out on a drive so that you know what kind of elements to expect.
With over 70% of American roadways located in regions that regularly experience snow and other winter conditions, it’s necessary to study the weather since you could face heightened dangers at any time.
Weather reports can keep you alert about winter driving. Therefore, listen to weather forecasters in your zone before you hit the road.
2. Purchase Winter Tires
Winter driving creates challenges for vehicles and their owners. Therefore, winterizing your car is an excellent investment in your winter safety.
The traction between your car tires and the highway determines your car’s acceleration, turns, and stopping on winter roads. This means proper tire selection can improve the performance and safety of your vehicle during winter.
If you live in a place with heavy snowfall and ice, it’s essential to purchase a set of winter tires so that your braking and accelerating can be safe and controlled. When you anticipate severe snow and ice on the road, you may want to fit studded tires on all your wheels. You can also use all-season radial tires when cruising around areas with light snowfall.
3. Learn How to Drive in the Snow
Ask a family member, friend, neighbor, or an expert driving instructor who knows how to drive in the snow for lessons and tips on navigating winter roads safely. While experienced drivers anticipate winter crises and avoid them, ordinary drivers may make the mistake of waiting until the last minute to react to the road situation.
As you winterize your car, try to familiarize yourself with basic winter driving tips. For example, plan your routes in advance, and postpone your trips when the weather looks bad. Also, de-ice your car when winter-driving. Finally, maintain safe speed limits and avoid being reckless.
4. Update Your Insurance
Your insurance should be valid and effective year-round, but winter is an excellent time to make sure that you, your vehicle, and passengers are all covered in the event of an accident. Comprehensive auto insurance can protect your car and its occupants against winter accidents.
Collision insurance can get you covered if you were to collide with a tree, an animal, and other objects. The right time to renew your insurance is about one week before your current policy ends.
5. Keep Drives Short
You probably don’t want to plan any long or extensive road trips on roads prone to ice and snowfall. Either take a plane or wait until spring for that vacation. Also, as the coronavirus pandemic lingers on, it may be better to stick to short trips. Short vacations will greatly reduce your risks of running into turbulent weather.
6. Consult a Lawyer
Suppose you do happen to get into an accident due to winter conditions. In that case, it’s essential to contact an auto accident lawyer who can help you navigate any legal issue that will arise.
Life after a winter auto accident can take its course for the worse. You may be in severe pain, miss your work, and medical bills may pile up on you. It can be hard to cope with the stress that comes with a winter car accident. But by consulting with a trusted lawyer, you can get the help you need. Accident attorneys like those at Colorado Injury Law in Denver can investigate the chain of events surrounding your accident and hold those at fault accountable.
When it comes to driving, safety should always come first, and the winter season makes this even more important. Mentioned in this article are a few of the best tips to ensure you are covered and your risk of accident is reduced.