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Staying Safe on the Road in Dangerous Winds

Although the calendar may indicate spring is on its way, the recent weather Virginia and the rest of the east coast has recently experienced says otherwise. Less than two weeks ago, the governor declared a state of emergency after the last storm. Along with heavy rain and intermittent snow, Virginians also dealt with strong gusts of winds that resulted in widespread power outages, traffic jams, closed bridges, and school closures.

It can be treacherous enough navigating a vehicle through snow and rain, but when strong winds are also present, drivers face the dangers of losing control of their vehicles, increasing their risks of accidents and injury. The following are tips that can help in situations where gusty and dangerous winds are present:

Types of wind: There are three types of wind that a driver may be dealing with: head, tail, and side winds. Head and tailwinds are easier to deal with and the only effect they have is to alter a vehicle’s speed. Side winds are the most frightening to encounter because of the way they can blow a vehicle off course.

Watch for debris: Strong wind gusts can cause loose debris to fly around. A flying piece of debris hitting a vehicle can impact the driver’s visibility or cause the driver to lose control. Debris can also do severe damage to a vehicle depending on the size and force it hits with. Any of these scenarios can result in deadly car crashes.

Hold onto the Wheel: A simple action like keeping both hands on the wheel can help give the vehicle additional stability. This can help decrease the risk of a side-swipe accident. If you do lose control, it is important to stay calm and gently turn the steering wheel back in the correct direction. One of the most common – and dangerous – causes of car crashes is overcorrection, often leading to vehicle rollovers.

Slow down: Because of the sudden movement the wind can cause, it is important to drive slower in order to allow enough time to react.

Snow Drifts: In the winter months when strong winds are present during snowstorms, there is an increased risk of snow drifts which can reduce driver visibility, as well as create hazardous road conditions.

Contact a Virginia Accident Attorney

The good news is that spring really is on its way and winter weather dangers will be forgotten about until next year. Unfortunately, no matter what the season, we are always at risk of being involved in a car crash.

If you have suffered injuries in a crash caused by the negligence of another driver, you may be able to pursue damages for your injuries. Contact a Virginia car accident attorney to find out what type of financial compensation you may be entitled to. The attorneys from Shapiro & Appleton have been advocating for accident victims for more than three decades and are happy to meet and discuss how we may be able to help. Call 800-752-0042 to set up a free consultation.

Richard N. Shapiro
Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyer Serving Va Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake & all of Virginia
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