Delaware is home to some of the most beautiful winter weather in the United States. Unfortunately, these Delaware winters also pose an increased risk for car accidents and truck accidents. Adapting your driving habits to remain safe in these conditions is essential to your safety and the safety of those around you on the road. By following a few safe driving tips for winter, you can reduce the risk of these accidents. However, if an accident occurs as a result of winter weather conditions, you have the right to hold anyone at fault accountable.
Proudly serving the people of Bear, Wilmington, and beyond, the experienced personal injury team at Rhoades & Morrow has dedicated their entire practice to advocating for just compensation for injured citizens across Delaware. If you or a loved one have been injured at the hands of someone else’s negligence in Delaware, trust a team backed by decades of experience and success. Let us start fighting for you today, so you see just compensation for the harm you’ve faced.
1. Get Prepared
Preparation is key to safely taking on winter weather conditions. It’s important to keep a stock of cold-weather gear in your car, including food, water, warm clothing, a flashlight, a car scraper, blankets, and extra medications with you in case you get stuck. Well-maintained tires with appropriate winter tread and the manufacturer’s recommended air pressure are essential to keeping you safe if the conditions get rough. It’s best to keep your vehicle well maintained, with a gas tank at least half full, and to ensure you clean any ice, snow, or debris off your car before driving it. While keeping your car in a garage may keep it clean, you should never start your car before opening the garage door or you may risk dangerous exposure to harmful fumes.
Staying informed of upcoming weather and road conditions before beginning your journey is incredibly important. It’s a good idea to plan your route rather than splitting your attention between the road and a GPS. You should also inform someone of your travel plans or share your location. Depending on the conditions, it may be advisable just to avoid any unnecessary trips until the poor weather clears.
2. Slow Down and Keep Your Distance
Delaware winters often mean slick roads, so it’s important to reduce your speed and increase the following distance between yourself and the vehicle in front of you to account for the extra time it would take to break. Giving yourself some extra time to react can also give you time to avoid any collisions or hazards ahead.
3. Use Headlights and Signal Early
Visibility is significantly reduced in winter weather conditions, so it’s critical to use your headlights, even during the day, to ensure you’re visible to others on the road. Signaling your intentions early also gives fellow drivers ample time to slow down and react.
4. Avoid Cruise Control
While useful tools at other times of the year, cruise control and autopilot are not recommended in icy or snowy conditions, as they cannot adapt to changing conditions in the same way that a human can. Moreover, for cars with sensors and cameras, snow and ice can greatly reduce their accuracy. Manually controlling your vehicle allows you to react quickly when road conditions change.
5. Beware of Black Ice
The dreaded black ice is difficult to spot and is a common hazard while driving in winter weather. Use extra caution when navigating bridges and overpasses, as well as shaded areas where black ice is more likely to form.
6. Know How to Handle Skidding
While avoiding sudden speed changes can minimize the risk of skidding, there is nothing that can entirely dismiss the risk. To ensure safe winter driving, you need to remain calm when skidding occurs. You should steer in the direction you want to go and avoid slamming the brakes to regain control of your vehicle.
Rhoades & Morrow: Experienced Delaware Personal Injury Lawyers Fighting Relentlessly For Your Rights
Even after taking all the necessary precautions, accidents are still unfortunately common in winter weather conditions. If you or a loved one were involved in an accident in Delaware and sustained injuries as a result, you don’t have to fight alone. Turn to a law firm, backed by decades of experience, with a practice built upon the mission of fighting for the rights of injured people across Delaware. Our skilled personal injury team at Rhoades & Morrow has offices in Wilmington, Newark, Milford, and Lewes and proudly serves clients across Delaware. We offer free initial consultations! Call us at (302)-427-9500 or fill out our online form today so we can get started fighting for you.