Amy Witherite, the Dallas automobile accident attorney from 1800-car-wreck.com offers the following 8 tips for making winter driving safer.
Make sure that your oil and antifreeze levels are appropriate
Replace worn windshield wipers. Check your tires for excessive wear and adequate inflation. Safe winter driving starts with a car ready for the storm.
ALWAYS check the weather conditions
Tune in to local television stations, radio stations, or the internet to get the latest updates. Get a Weather App on your mobile phone as well and check the forecasts. If weather conditions are poor, then by all means avoid leaving your home, if possible.
Stock your car
Load it with blankets, gloves, nonperishable snacks and water, a flashlight, and a small first-aid kit. Those can and will come very handy in a blizzard. If you have young children, please remember to add necessary infant-care items to your survival kit.
Bridges freeze over first
Always use caution on bridges and overpasses. Snow may melt and refreeze as ice, so watch out for icy patches, especially in shaded areas.
Different braking “rules” may apply if you do not have anti-lock brakes.
Well, in fact, even with cars featuring the latest anti-lock brakes, you need to be cautious and expect the un-expectable.
By driving cautiously,
you can anticipate and react to other drivers and to unsafe road conditions. Always allow additional travel time when driving in bad weather.
Braking on icy roads is difficult
Increase the distance between you and the vehicle in front of you to allow you time to maneuver.
Turn your lights on
This will allow other drivers to notice your vehicle.
Some statistics on winter driving from the Federal Highway Administration:
- Each year, around 117,000 Americans are injured when over 1,300 get killed in car accidents related to winter driving.
- 24% of U.S. car accidents occur in icy, snowy, or slushy conditions.
- 15% of U.S. car accidents happen during actively falling snow or sleet.
- Teen drivers are involved in an automobile accident because of bad weather conditions the most.
- Senior drivers are the second most likely group to be involved in a crash.