Common Reasons for Wintertime Car Crashes and How to Prevent Them
Milwaukee roadways are much more dangerous in the wintertime because of lower temperatures and the rain, ice and snow that come with those lower temperatures during winter. You can help protect yourself by knowing the common causes of winter car accidents and steps you can take to reduce your risk of a crash.
The Milwaukee car accident attorneys of PKSD are here to assist you if you have been injured in a car accident. Contact us for a free, no obligation consultation and learn the legal options available for recovering compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
During winter months, you may encounter snow and ice on roadways. Snow and ice make it much harder for your tires to gain traction, which makes it harder to stop, slow down and turn your vehicle safely. You may also encounter black ice, which is created when water freezes on road surfaces. Black ice is tough to see and can easily cause you to lose control of your vehicle.
Slick roads commonly cause the following types of accidents:
- Rear-end accidents – These happen when drivers cannot slow down or stop before hitting the back of another car. The best way to reduce the risk of a rear-end crash is to always give yourself extra space when driving during the winter. Double or triple following distance and reduce your speed to maintain better control of your vehicle. This is one of the most important defensive driving tips for wintertime.
- Sliding through an intersection – These types of crashes happen at red lights and stop signs. Your vehicle may strike another car or a pedestrian because the slippery surface prevents you from stopping your vehicle before you are in the intersection. You can help prevent these accidents by starting to slow down farther away from the intersection. You should also look for signs the intersection is slippery and anticipate changes in traffic signals so you can start slowing down sooner.
- Spin-out collisions – These happen when drivers lose all control over their vehicles because of slick surfaces. You can help reduce the risk of these types of crashes by reducing your speed, especially when making turns. If you ever start to spin out, do not slam on the brakes or try to quickly correct the skid. Turn your steering wheel in the direction of the spin and slowly correct yourself.
Winter weather can lower visibility, making it difficult to see just a few feet in front of you. Snow and ice on the roads also make it hard to see road markings and surfaces, so you may not know exactly where you should be on the road. This often leads to lane-drifting accidents.
You can help prevent lane-drifting and other low-visibility accidents by keeping a close eye on your surroundings. Maintain a safe following distance at all times and look for other vehicles’ tracks to follow if you cannot see road markings.
Poor Vehicle Maintenance
Vehicles depend on their essential systems and components being in top shape for winter travel. If you neglect vehicle maintenance, you can create dangerous driving conditions for yourself.
For example, if your tire treads are worn down, you will not have enough traction to slow down, stop and turn properly on snow and ice. If your windshield wipers are dull and defrost system is malfunctioning, you cannot clear your windows and mirrors to see the road clearly. If your headlights and taillights are burnt out, you will have trouble seeing in front of you and other drivers will not be able to see you and anticipate their distance from you.
You can greatly reduce your chances of a wintertime car accident by repairing or replacing damaged or worn-down systems or components before winter starts. Take your vehicle to a qualified mechanic to ensure your car is safe to drive during the winter months.
Drunk driving accidents are a problem all year long, but inebriated drivers may be more likely to drive themselves home instead of walking or waiting for public transportation.
This is why you should always have a transportation plan before you go somewhere you will be consuming alcohol. Decide if you will take a rideshare or cab, designate a sober driver, or commit to walking home and wearing the appropriate clothing to stay warm when walking home.
Contact Our Attorneys in Milwaukee Today
If you have been injured in a car accident, the Milwaukee personal injury attorneys of PKSD can evaluate your case and help you pursue compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Our legal team has years of experience helping accident victims gain the compensation they deserve.
Request a free, no obligation consultation today and find out what legal options are available in your case. When you work with our firm, there are no upfront fees. You only pay if we recover compensation for you.