The old saying is April showers bring May flowers, but they also bring an increased risk of bad weather car accidents. According to national data, there are more than one million weather-related car accidents each year. These crashes kill more than 7,000 people and leave more than half million more victims injured. This data also reveals that driving in rain is actually more dangerous than driving in snowy or icy conditions.
Understanding how heavy rains affect road conditions can help drivers avoid crashing.
Now that spring is here, it is a good idea to de-winterize your vehicle. Some drivers make the change over from all-season tires to snow tires during the winter months, so it is important to make sure these are now changed back. While snow tires do a better job of gripping the snowy and icy roads, all-season tires are more appropriate and work better on wet roads. If you didn’t change tires, it is still a good idea to check to make sure your tires are properly inflated and the tread quality is safe.
Spring is also an ideal time to check windshield wipers to ensure they are also in good working order and are not fraying or tearing. Visibility in rainy weather is critical to avoid getting into a crash.
Adjust Driving Behaviors in Rainy Weather
Although drivers should practice good driving practices at all times, there are certain things to remember when you are driving in rainy weather. Keep in mind that the rain that hits the road can mix with any oil sitting on the pavement. This can cause the road to become very slippery, making stopping quickly difficult. Leaving extra space between your vehicle and the one in front of you and decreasing your speed can help avoid a crash.
Heavy rains usually cause flooding and/or standing water on streets and roads and this increases the risk of hydroplaning, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle. Tires can lose contact with the road even in a vehicle traveling less than 35 mph. Braking hard and taking sharp turns increase the risk of hydroplaning even more.
In addition to driving slower, there are several other steps drivers can take in rainy weather. Make sure to allow yourself enough time to arrive at your destination, even if it means leaving earlier than usual. Even if it is during the day, make sure your headlights are at all times. This not only can help you to see better but also lets other drivers see your vehicle. Never use your vehicle’s cruise control option in rainy weather. The acceleration factor of that system on a slippery area of road can result in a crash.
Contact a Virginia Personal Injury Attorney
Unfortunately, no matter how many precautions we take, there are always negligent drivers on the road who ignore the dangerous hazards of driving in bad weather and do not take the same precautions. If you are injured in a crash caused by another driver, a Virginia car accident attorney can assist you in obtaining financial compensation for any losses you have suffered as a result of those injuries. These losses include medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, permanent disability, scarring, and more.
Contact the legal team from Shapiro & Appleton today at 757-663-5031 to set up a free and confidential case evaluation.