When you live in New York City, access to public transportation can make it much easier and safer to travel in winter weather. However, if you need to travel away from the city, there’s a good chance you’ll need to drive on snowy, icy roads this winter. Since these conditions significantly increase the risk of an automobile accident, it’s important to take precautions when you’re behind the wheel. To make sure you stay safe on the road, here are five essential tips to follow while driving this winter.
Safe Driving Tips to Prevent Winter Automobile Accidents
1. Change Your Tires
If you frequently drive on snowy or icy roads, consider switching to winter tires. All-season tires won’t always be able to maintain a secure grip on slick surfaces. However, winter tires have a special tread that can improve traction.
It’s also important to make sure your tires are properly inflated, as they can lose air when the temperature drops. Low pressure can increase the risk of a dangerous flat or blowout.
2. Slow Down in Harsh Conditions
Cars take longer to stop when snow, rain, or sleet is present. That’s why it’s critical to reduce your speed by one-third of the posted limit if roads are wet and by one-half if they are snow-covered. To minimize the risk of a rear-end automobile accident, you should also increase your following distance behind other vehicles.
3. Be Prepared for Black Ice
If you hit black ice, slamming on the brakes or turning abruptly can cause you to lose more control, and potentially, spin out. Instead, ease off the brakes and gas to slow down and try to keep the steering wheel straight. If your vehicle has an antilock braking system (ABS), there’s no need to pump your brakes — they’ll automatically do it for you.
4. Get Preventive Maintenance
To make sure your vehicle is up to handling the demands of winter roads, invest in routine maintenance. Some important tasks to tend to include having the oil changed to support good engine health and checking the brakes to ensure stopping ability.
5. Replace Worn Wiper Blades
When you’re driving in a blizzard or ice storm, your windshield wipers will likely be the only thing working to give you a clear view. For this reason, you should always replace your wiper blades before winter arrives, especially if they appear worn or damaged.
While you can’t always prevent automobile accidents from happening, you can seek compensation for damages if the incident wasn’t your fault. With the support of Stephen B. Kaufman, P.C. in the Bronx, NY, you can prepare a strong case to gain payment for medical, legal, and other expenses related to the car crash. Understanding that how you respond to an accident can greatly affect the success of your case, these New York City personal injury attorneys will work swiftly and thoroughly to represent your case with confidence. Visit this law firm online to learn more about their services, or call (718) 822-0500 to review your case with a trusted attorney.