Jan 13 2016

Weather-Related Accidents Can Cause Serious Problems

Our Utah car accident lawyers warn that weather-related accidents can cause serious problems for motorists.     On the roadway, there are a lot of things we can control. We can control how fast we drive, how aggressively or courteously we treat other motorists, whether we use cell phones or other distractions while driving, and whether we obey the posted traffic signals. Although some of these choices are in violation of the law and can result in traffic citations, we have the freedom to choose whether we make them or not, thus choosing to make the road a safer or more dangerous place for ourselves and other motorists.

driving snow

One thing we can’t control is the weather. You can control whether you use your phone while driving and whether you drive above the posted speed limit, but you can’t control whether it rains or not. During periods of inclement weather, the roadways become more dangerous. Fog, rain, and snow can all reduce drivers’ visibility and when the road is wet, icy, or covered in snow, it can be easy to hydroplane and slip. This makes it easier to be involved in a car accident than it is during other parts of the year. Bad weather coupled with poor driving choices can make motorists especially susceptible to collisions and other accidents. If you have been involved in a car accident because of another driver’s negligence, even if the accident was also partially caused by bad weather, you could be entitled to receive monetary compensation through a personal injury claim.

There are many types of weather-related car accidents that can injure or kill motorists, their passengers, and pedestrians. Some examples of the types of weather-related accidents you could face on the roadway include:

  • Sliding into other cars or stationary objects on an ice-covered roadway;
  • Hydroplaning when driving through a puddle, losing control of a vehicle;
  • Crashing with another vehicle or a stationary object because you can’t see through the snowfall, fog, or heavy rain;
  • On extremely hot days, older cars and those with damaged cooling systems can overheat, running the risk of shutting down and creating an accident;
  • Colliding with an object that can’t be seen in the dark; or
  • Being pushed out of a traffic lane by a forceful gust of wind.

Be prepared for any extreme weather you might face. Keep an ice scraper, a flashlight, a heavy blanket, a car cell phone charger, and a gallon of fresh, clean water in your car. You might need these if you are stuck on a cold, dark night. If you are stranded, call the local police or state troopers for help. Before leaving your destination, always brush snow off the top of your car and scrape every window and both windshields. Do not put yourself or others at risk of falling snow or an inability to see other drivers on the road. If you do not feel comfortable driving through any type of weather condition, do not feel obligated to drive. Call out of work, skip class, or cancel your social obligation. Stay safe by choosing not to drive in dangerous conditions. You can protect yourself from being involved in a weather-related accident this winter by knowing how each type of weather event can affect the roadway. If you are a parent of a teen who drives, go over these weather events with him or her and discuss the importance of adjusting their driving to the weather conditions present.

If you are involved in a car accident this winter, know your rights as an accident victim and work with one of the experienced auto accident attorneys at William Rawlings & Associates. To learn more about the personal injury claim process and to get started on your case, contact our team named to Utah’s Top Personal Injury Lawyers in Utah.