Winter is Coming – 10 Tips to Avoid Winter Car Accidents

By Greg Kohn

New Jersey winters can be brutal, especially for drivers. Snow, ice, and cold rains make roads slick and dangerous. Even though you may not be able to control the driving behaviors of other drivers, you can take some steps that will reduce your risk of being involved in a winter car accident. If you are injured in a winter car accident, you can help protect your legal rights by contacting experienced New Jersey car accident attorneys to handle your accident claim.

10 Tips for Avoiding Winter Car Accidents

1. Leave earlier and drive slower. Allow yourself additional time to reach your destination so that you are not rushed. Driving too fast for conditions is a common cause of winter car accidents.
2. Schedule a maintenance appointment for your vehicle. A vehicle that is poorly maintained can increase your risk of being involved in a winter car crash. Schedule a maintenance appointment and have your vehicle checked thoroughly to ensure it is ready for winter weather conditions.
3. Check your tires. The wrong air pressure in your tires can increase your chance for a car crash. Consider replacing your car tires with winter tires specifically designed for driving in harsh winter weather conditions.
4. Allow more room between your vehicle and other vehicles. During the winter, you should increase the following distance between your car and the car in front of you. You need additional stopping distance when roads are icy or slick.
5. Limit all distractions while driving. Distracted driving is a serious problem in the United States. However, when you combine distracted driving with winter roads, the combination can be deadly. Put down your cell phone and avoid all other distractions that cause you to lose focus on the road ahead.
6. Do not use cruise control. Using the cruise control feature on your vehicle can be dangerous during winter weather conditions. A car that skids on icy or wet roads may continue to accelerate if the cruise control is engaged, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle. Therefore, avoid cruise control during harsh winter weather conditions.
7. Avoid driving when you are fatigued or drowsy. Drowsy driving is dangerous at all times throughout the year. However, when the roads are hazardous because of winter weather, you need additional time to react to situations that could lead to a car accident. When you are tired or drowsy, your reaction time and judgment may be impaired. Try to get a good night’s sleep before driving.
8. Clear your car before driving. Do not drive your vehicle if there is snow, ice, or frost on the windows or mirrors. It may take a few extra minutes, but always clean your car windows and mirrors completely before driving.
9. Know your car’s controls and features. Some vehicles have special controls and features for driving in winter weather conditions. Read your owner’s manual and make sure you are familiar with your car’s controls and features before driving in winter weather conditions.
10. Check weather and road conditions before leaving. Before leaving home or work, you should check the current weather conditions for your drive. You should also check the weather conditions for the next few hours in case you become stranded in traffic or need to run errands. You may need to make other arrangements if the weather conditions are too severe to allow for safe driving conditions.

Contact New Jersey Car Accident Attorneys for Help Filing a Winter Weather Car Accident Claim

The other driver may claim that he or she is not responsible for the crash because of winter weather conditions. Schedule a consultation with our New Jersey car accident lawyers today to see how we can investigate the crash to obtain evidence proving the other driver caused the crash, even though winter weather conditions may have also been a factor in the cause of the accident.

About the Author
Greg Kohn is a partner at Nagel Rice and specializes in complex civil litigation cases, including professional malpractice, personal injury, class actions, wrongful death, products liability, and commercial litigation.  He has extensive experience representing clients in both state and federal court. Greg has tried many jury trials to verdict and has recovered over $50 million in settlements and verdicts in all types of personal injury matters including automobile accidents, wrongful death cases, slip and falls, and other catastrophic injury cases. Greg also handles medical malpractice cases, involving misdiagnoses, wrongful birth, and delayed cancer diagnosis. If you have questions regarding this article, you can contact Greg here.