Winter is a busy time for garages and insurance agencies. The ice and snow on the roadways significantly increases the rate of accidents, especially if people do not drive according to the conditions. If you are in a motor vehicle accident, you could be held liable for damages, especially if it is proven that you were negligent while operating your vehicle.
Winter driving requires more caution and care on the road. A well running car, and proper driving skills will help you avoid getting into an accident. If someone hits you, you could end up missing work, losing your car because of the extend of the damage, or facing serious or life-threatening injuries. If you are involved in a collision, see a car accident lawyer right away.
To protect yourself from causing an crash, these tips will help you avoid colliding with other automobiles on the road.
1. Service Your Vehicle
Before the snow falls, it is a good idea to take the car to your garage so that it can be checked and serviced for the cold season. Frigid temperatures can quickly stall a vehicle so regular maintenance will help keep your auto in top form and ready for the cold season ahead.
2. Clean your windows and mirrors
When operating your auto, you must be able to see clearly out of all the windows and mirrors. While this might sound logical, it is surprising how many people do not scrape the ice and snow off their windows and external mirrors first before driving. If you do not have clean, unfrosted windows, you cannot see what is going on around you when driving.
3. Give yourself extra time
Unlike the warmer seasons, you cannot just start your roadster and drive off in the wintery months. Snow and frost must be cleaned off your car first, especially if you park outside, and extra driving time is needed for the reduced speeds that are required on slippery, icy pavement. To avoid rushing from one place to the next, which can cause reckless driving skills, give yourself additional time.
4. Drive according to the conditions
Just because the signs say you can go a certain speed, does not mean you should be driving that fast, especially when there is ice and snow on the ground. Common sense and caution must be used when operating an automobile in snowy weather. Speeding, or driving too slow increases the risk of accidents. If you do not feel comfortable cruising with the rest of the traffic, it is probably best to find other means of transportation.
5. Use Winter Tires
Unlike regular tires, winter wheels have more traction, so it is easier to control your vehicle. Winter specific car rubber reduces the amount of accidents on icy roads because drivers have more control and better stopping times.
6. Buckle Up
When used properly, seatbelts and car seats save lives in an accident. By wearing your seatbelt and buckling your passengers and children in safely, you are far less likely to be seriously hurt in a collision.
7. Ignore & Avoid Distractions
Distractions take your focus off the roadway, and even a quick glance off the roadway can cause an accident. Texting or talking on your phone is one of the biggest distractions and most dangerous. However, other actions that take your eyes and concentration off the road will also increase your risk or collisions. Some distracting habits by drivers include: putting on makeup, changing music or radio stations, talking to passengers, drinking, eating, reading, thinking of other life circumstances and not on the road, looking at your surroundings, and many more external activities that are not related to operating your vehicle.
Operating a motor vehicle is a responsibility that should not be taken lightly. Proper care and usage of your auto will prevent accidents and protect you from liability.