Every year, there are over 500 fatal car accidents in the state of Washington. There are many reasons for them — alcohol involvement, distracted drivers, or inclement weather.
In Washington, the snow and ice can make the roads a perilous place. Driving in winter storms is no joke, but it’s made a whole lot easier if you know how to minimize the risk.
Here’s everything you need to remember about driving in the snow.
Increase Braking Time
Every year, 24% of accidents in the US happen on snowy or icy roads, where it’s easy to slip.
To avoid this, don’t put your foot down on the brake harshly. Remember, it can take up to four times as long to come to a stop when the road is covered in ice, so make sure you brake gently and in plenty of time.
If you start to slip, ease off the accelerator and focus on steering. Don’t put your foot down harder on the brake, as this could cause you to lose control.
It can often be dangerous to assume everyone is following the rules as well as you are. Not everyone knows how to drive in winter weather.
For that reason, assume others are a hazard. Stay far behind the car in front of you and give them plenty of room. It’s a good rule of thumb, in general, to stay away from other drivers as much as possible.
Even when it’s your turn at traffic lights and stop signs, glance around quickly to ensure no one is losing control or making bad decisions that may come back on you.
Avoid Driving at Night, Where Possible
It’s sometimes impossible to avoid driving at night but if you can avoid driving in the snow after dark, do so.
Snow falling means decreased visibility and with a blanket of darkness, this is even more true. If you can, leave work early to avoid this or arrive later in the morning so it’s already daylight when you’re on the road.
If you do have to drive at night, take it slow and don’t be pressured by other impatient drivers.
When driving, you should always minimize distractions to avoid a car accident and get home safe, but this is even more true for winter driving.
When it can require so much concentration to stay in control of the car, don’t take any chances. No glances at your phone, no becoming super invested in an audiobook or podcast — make your one and only concentration the road ahead of you.
Driving in Winter Storms Can Be Risky
You should always follow these best practices for driving in winter storms but even if you do, some things may be out of your control and you could still end up in an unfortunate accident.
If this has happened to you and you’re looking for a personal injury attorney, Spokane has an answer. Maurer Law can provide legal representation and advice.
If you need an auto accident attorney in Spokane, contact us today.