Here in Philadelphia, we are no strangers to harsh winter weather conditions. As the last leaves fall from the trees, we brace ourselves for a long, cold winter ahead. While many of us have spent our lives learning to drive in adverse winter weather conditions, it can be far too easy to become complacent about this. Let us take a moment to refresh and learn about some ways to deal with winter roadway dangers so we can help keep each other safer on the roads this winter.
Common Road Hazards During the Winter
Winters in Pennsylvania can mean snow, ice, sleet, and freezing temperatures. Blizzards, heavy snow, and other weather conditions can seriously reduce visibility on the roads, increasing the risk of an accident. Furthermore, snow piled up on the roadways can make it difficult for drivers to see things like traffic signs, as well as pedestrians and other vehicles
Slippery roadways also are a significant winter roadway danger. Iced over roads, particularly black ice that is not as visible to drivers, can present as a particularly dangerous winter roadway condition. The icy roads significantly reduce the car’s ability to maintain traction, increasing the likelihood of the car spinning out of control. Icy roadways also reduce a car’s ability to brake quickly to avoid things like rear-ending or hitting another vehicle.
The freezing temperatures can also be dangerous for drivers, particularly drivers who may be experiencing car troubles and must wait on the side of the road for assistance. Without proper preparation, you can find yourself exposed to these freezing temperatures without the necessary gear to help you cope with them and this can take a significant toll on your body.
Car maintenance issues also tend to become exponentially more dangerous in the winter months. Worn-out tires mean poor traction on top of potentially slick or icy roadways which can be a combination for disaster. Additionally, things like broken headlights, windshield wipers in disrepair, or broken defroster fans can have a significant impact on your ability to safely navigate through winter weather conditions.
To avoid or reduce the risk associated with these winter roadway dangers, you should be prepared to eliminate all unnecessary travel depending on the weather forecast. If you must drive during poor winter weather conditions, be sure to keep a winter emergency travel kit in your vehicle. Keep your gas tank at least half full at all times and be sure to reduce your speed as well as increasing your following distance
Before you head out on winter travels near or far, be sure to tell someone else where you are going as well as your estimated arrival time. This can be helpful should you need emergency assistance as someone will know generally where to look for you. Should you become stranded, remain with your vehicle until assistance arrives. Make sure your tailpipe is clear, crack your windows and run the engine about every hour.
Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorneys
At Cooper Schall & Levy we want you and your loved ones to stay safe this winter and all year long. Be safe out there, especially as icy weather conditions are soon on their way. If you are injured out there on our winter roads, we are here to help. Contact us today.