Each year, drivers in and around the Pittsburgh area have to be ready for winter weather conditions. Driving through inclement weather is not easy. At SMT Legal, we know that there is a higher risk of car accidents in snowy weather. Our Pittsburgh car accident lawyers want to discuss how you can stay safe while driving through the snow. We are here to help if the careless or negligent actions of another driver have caused you harm.
Preparation is important for driving in the snow
Before the snow even falls and as the temperatures begin to drop, you need to prepare your vehicle for the harsh winter conditions that can blanket the Pittsburgh area. You need to ensure that you equip your vehicle with winter tires that have a tread designed to grip the snow and ice for excellent handling. Winter tires also help you brake the vehicle more quickly. In addition to having the correct tires, you need to ensure that each tire is properly inflated. Air contracts in cooler weather, which means that your tires may have less pressure in the winter months.
Aside from your tires, have a professional performing winter inspection of your vehicle. This includes checks of:
- Your vehicle’s antifreeze
- Wiper blade condition
- Battery inspection
- Washer fluid with a winter-weather variety
When the snow arrives
When the snow has begun to fall, there are several steps you can take to stay safe on the roadway. This includes:
- Check road and weather conditions: Always be aware of the weather conditions and predict when there will be trouble on the roadway. If the temperatures are below freezing, expect that you will have icy conditions even if the snow has melted. When traveling on the roadway and snow, drive and tracks created by other vehicles.
- Clear your vehicle: Before you head out, remove ice and snow from your vehicle before using it. This includes ice and snow on the hood, trunk, roof, and on every window.
- Slow down: The posted speed limits are designed for good driving conditions. When there is snow or ice on the roadway, you should reduce your speed significantly.
- Increase following distance: You will need to ensure that there is more distance between your vehicle and the one in front of it than you normally would.
- Avoid abrupt maneuvers: When the roadways are snowy or slippery, your vehicle may react in ways you did not intend. Use slow and deliberate motions when driving through the snow, including when applying gas or the brakes.
- Avoid Distractions: Put the cell phone down, do not mess with the radio, and avoid any other distractions inside the vehicle that will take your eyes off the roadway when it is snowing outside.
We will help you secure the compensation you deserve
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident that was caused by another driver’s reckless or negligent actions, you may be entitled to compensation. Let the team at SMT Legal get to work on your case as soon as possible so we can secure the compensation you are entitled to. This can include:
- Any medical expenses related to the accident
- Lost wages if you cannot work while you recover
- Pain and suffering damages
- Loss of personal enjoyment damages
- Possible punitive damages against any grossly negligent driver