Tips for Winter Driving Safety
A recent survey by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration determined that New York is one of the top five deadliest states for car accidents. Frequent wintertime driving conditions near the Great Lakes can cause hazards such as white-outs with limited visibility or slick roads. In dangerous weather, accidents can result from people driving too fast for the conditions or other safety violations. Generally, the following are good steps to take to prepare for the winter driving season.
Prepare Your Vehicle
Proper maintenance is necessary for safe driving year-round. However, in the winter, pay special attention to your vehicle’s battery, fluids, tires and other systems that can be affected by colder temperatures. Clear your car of snow and ice to ensure proper visibility and fully functional exterior lights.
Drive at a speed that is appropriate for the current weather conditions, as it is harder to control a vehicle on a slippery or snow-covered road. Increase your following distance so that you have enough time to stop for vehicles ahead of you. Before heading out, plan for weather and traffic conditions accordingly, giving yourself more time to get where you are going.
Prepare for an Emergency
Even after taking the most precautions, vehicle collisions sometimes happen. Stock your vehicle with essential supplies to help keep you safe until help arrives. Blankets, jumper cables, and flares can be used to help you or someone else in need. Have a plan and know your priorities after a collision to help you keep calm and deal with the consequences of the incident.
Drive Safely All Year
Although winter driving presents special hazards, safe driving should be a priority at all times. Everyone in your vehicle should wear safety belts. Children should be in appropriate child seats. Do not drink and drive, and never drive when distracted by a cell phone or any other device. Make safe driving a habit for you and everyone else in your vehicle at all times.
For assistance with these matters, please contact a member of our personal injury practice.
This publication is intended as an information source for clients, prospective clients, and colleagues and constitutes attorney advertising. The content should not be considered legal advice and readers should not act upon information in this publication without individualized professional counsel.
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