The southeast anxiously has watched the category 2 hurricane Sally slowly make its way to landfall in the Gulf. Currently, the south Metro Atlanta area can expect surges of wind and heavy rainfall in the days that follow. Drivers should be cautious on the roads as dangerous weather conditions result in catastrophic accidents on the road.
According to the Federal Highway Administration, for an average year, roughly 15% of fatal crashes, 19% of injury crashes, and 22% of property-damage-only (PDO) crashes occur in the presence of adverse weather and/or slick pavement. Inclement weather also reduces the productivity of emergency response services who may be unable to reach the scene for some time.
Just because the weather has an impact on driving conditions, you can still be held liable for injuring others in a wreck. For example, if a driver in front of you slams on their brakes, you will slam on your brakes too. However, the pavement is slick from the rain and your car slides into the vehicle in front of you. Though you cannot help that the car slid, you will still be responsible to cover the damages and injuries the other driver sustained.
To avoid these accidents, there are a few practices you should use when driving in bad weather:
Avoid driving unless necessary. Reduce traffic on the road and wait until the weather has calmed before travelling.
Make sure you are seen. Turn on your hazard lights in heavy rainfall.
Make sure you can see. Low quality windshield wipers can quickly make driving in inclement weather more dangerous for yourself and those around you.
Reduce your speed. Heavy rain can reduce traffic speed by 16%, so be aware of the speed of those around you and avoid passing at this time.
Keep both hands on the wheel. Strong winds can impact the mobility of your vehicle, especially at higher speeds. Knowing the sensitivity of your car will help prevent further loss of control.
Don’t brake or accelerate if you hydroplane. Turning off cruise control functions will help you remain in control of your speed and braking system.
You can also make claims against another driver if they are at fault in how they drove during inclement weather. Don’t hesitate to begin the process of filing a claim even if the other driver blames the weather for their damages to you. Driver’s responsibilities on the road are only increased, not erased, when driving in dangerous weather conditions.
Proving negligence in an accident that occured during bad weather is more complex, but our Southside injury attorneys have the knowledge to hold those liable. When determining liability, both parties could be involved, however the other driver can be proven to have caused the wreck for reasons such as:
- Driving with worn tires
- Driving with worn windshield wipers
- Failing to maintain a safe distance
- Failing to maintain a safe speed
- Not using proper headlights or hazards
Our Southside attorneys will investigate each possible cause showing that the driver displayed negligence towards the safety of others on the road during dangerous weather. If you choose to drive in dangerous weather, practice extra caution as well as defensive driving when others fail to responsibly drive. If you are ever injured in an auto accident during inclement weather, contact a Southside injury attorney to help you recover the compensation you deserve.
Any representations regarding the law in this Blog is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. By using this blog site you understand that there is no attorney client relationship between you and the Blog publisher. The Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state.