New York residents are well accustomed to winter weather. Each year we eagerly await the plows and salt trucks to clear away fresh snow so we can continue on as usual. However, even a cleared winter road can be deceptive, which is why every driver should be aware of the three most common types of winter accidents and their causes.
Even on a cleared road, ice and slush can cause you to lose control and drift whenever you hit the brakes. The best way to avoid this is to drive slowly and exercise proper braking techniques on slushy streets.
If you see brown slush or compacted snow on the road, tap the brakes repeatedly to slow down. This will help you maintain traction and prevent drifting.
Rear-end collisions make up about 30% of all car crashes. These are more common in the winter for the same reason as drifting instances: drivers are going too fast and aren’t braking correctly.
Just as important as using the correct braking technique for the snow is driving at a safe speed. In general, winter drivers should accelerate and decelerate much more gradually. It’s also a good idea to go at least 5-10 mph slower when driving on snow. If the conditions are especially bad or you’re experiencing very low visiblity, consider going even slower.
When a car starts drifting at high speeds, a driver must act quickly to keep control of the vehicle and prevent a spinout. If the car loses traction on snow, it can start to hydroplane, meaning that the wheels have no traction and slide all at once.
If you ever find yourself fishtailing and at risk of a spinout, remember that you need to move your steering wheel with the turn to regain traction. It sounds counterintuitive and stressful, but you need to turn your wheel in the direction you’re sliding to regain control. If you don’t, you might just end up spinning off the road.
If you or someone you love suffered serious injuries in a winter car crash, we are here to help. If you’d like an experienced Brooklyn personal injury attorney from Koenigsberg & Associates Law Offices to evaluate your case, don’t hesitate to call us at (718) 690-3132 or send us an email!