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Get ready for wintry roads to minimize the risk of crashing

On Behalf of | Oct 28, 2019 | Car Accidents

With the winter months not too far away, drivers need to take a few minutes to brush up on their driving skills for the days when snow or ice overtake the roadways. This can help everyone to remain as safe as possible during times when conditions are treacherous.

Your safety starts before you leave home. You have to ensure that your vehicle is ready for the season. Approximately 2,000 fatalities occur on wintry roads each year, so take the time to minimize the chance that you will end up as part of this statistic.

Vehicle preparation

Your vehicle’s tires need to be able to grip the road, so you must ensure they have proper tread depth. You also always need to have at least half of a tank of gas in your vehicle because you might become stranded and need the gas to help you avoid freezing.

Having a cold weather kit in the vehicle is also a good idea. For local trips, this should include a shovel, sand or kitty litter to help improve traction if you get stuck, a flashlight, a blanket, a snow brush, and an ice scraper. If you are going on a longer trip, you can add in water and nonperishable food items. It is also a good idea to have a charger for your phone in case you are stranded for a long period and need to make phone calls.

Driving tips

If you have something to do that isn’t important, check the weather and road conditions. It is usually best to stay home, if you can, during inclement weather so that you aren’t taking a risky ride. If you do have to go out, remember to allow yourself ample time to brake when you need to stop since stopping distance is increased in wintry conditions.

Additionally, remember that it takes longer to get moving from a stop, so some vehicles might not get going quickly especially if they are two-wheel drive. Even semitrucks might face challenges with this.

In case of an accident

If you are involved in a crash, try to stay in your vehicle if it is safe to do so. This provides a barrier of protection between you and any vehicle that comes careening toward you. Be sure to contact the police and ask for medical assistance if there are any injuries. You should likely seek medical care for an evaluation even if you don’t think you were injured. Some victims of wintry weather crashes in Illinois might opt to seek compensation from the party liable for the wreck.