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Driving and Winter Weather Conditions in NY

Winter weather conditions in NY can become severe very quickly, and even the most experienced drivers can face dangerous hazards on the road. The Federal Highway Commission stated that one in four car accidents involve inclement weather. Some of the most common hazards are:

  • Black ice: Roadways can be covered by a thin layer of ice that is invisible to the naked eye or hidden by a layer of fresh snow. Drivers are unaware of the hazard, and have no time to prepare for a collision or spin-out.
  • Limited visibility: A heavy snowfall is sometimes referred to as a white-out, making it almost impossible to see other cars on the road. If you cannot see, you have no idea what to expect and no time to avoid an accident.
  • Freezing rain: Raindrops can freeze when they make contact with a surface, including the windshield of a car. The roads become slicker and the visibility is significantly diminished.
  • Sleet: Sleet looks like regular snow, but it far more slippery and makes a vehicle much more difficult to control.

Some ways to prevent being a victim of an inclement weather-related car accident is to:

  • Thoroughly clean off your car after a snow storm to prevent snow and ice from landing on other drivers and causing them to lose control.
  • During seasonally bad weather, make sure to have ice scrapers on hand and remember to top off the windshield wiper fluid, which contains anti-freeze.
  • Install snow tires and make sure that there is plenty of tread left on the tires.
  • Four-wheel drive and anti-lock brakes are helpful for minimizing skidding and helping to regain control as quickly as possible. Driving in a slow gear also aids in counteracting skidding.
  • Drive at a much lower speed and increase the following distance because slick roads make stopping much more challenging.
  • If you know that snow and ice are going to impact driving in inclement weather, it’s very helpful to learn and practice what to do in case of a skid, such as taking your foot off the accelerator and turning the wheel while applying the brakes.

If you have been seriously injured in any kind of auto accident, contact the experienced and knowledgeable personal injury attorneys at William H. Cooper Law.

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