According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were a total of 281,788 motor vehicle accidents caused by bad road surface conditions throughout the state in 2011. This number also reflects the total number of fatalities, injuries, and property damage.
With this in mind, strong weather can have a significant impact on the ability of a driver to control their vehicle, which can result in serious physical and property damage.
Have you or someone you love been injured in an accident that occurred due to exceptionally bad weather?
The auto accident attorneys at The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm have sympathy for all injured victims following an accident of any sort, and believe that if you or a family member has been injured, the victim may be eligible for compensation benefits.
We have many years of experience and have recovered MILLIONS of dollars in compensation for our clients. To learn more about how we can help you, complete our “Free Case Evaluation” form located to the left or call us today at (217) 394-5885. At The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm, we offer complimentary consultations and we only get paid when we win.
Safety Tips for Driving in Bad Weather
Resulting from the great amount of accidents throughout our state, our attorneys have gathered some information which is intended to assist drivers during bad weather conditions. We recognize that the southern Illinois and the St. Louis areas receive a great variety of different weather conditions, which presents many dangers to our roadways. The following is intended to assist drivers during these times:
- Be Prepared – Drivers must be ready for adverse weather no matter where they are driving. Every driver should carry certain things in their vehicle including; extra clothing, flashlight, blanket, food and water, sand or salt, windshield wiper fluid, windshield scraper, jumper cables, traction mats, and a half tank of gas during winter.
- Pre-Trip Inspection – Drivers should perform a quick inspection of their vehicle including tires, wiper blades, fluid levels, and lights. It is also recommended to have your vehicle checked several times during the winter months to avoid being trapped on the side of the road.
- Slow Down – Often times, accidents will occur when a driver is going too fast for the road conditions. By slowing down and being more patient, drivers have more time to react to hazards and help other drivers to spot them.
- Allow for Extra Space – By allowing for extra space between you and other vehicles, it will allow you to have enough time to move out of harm’s way, while also giving yourself extra stopping distance.
- Steady Grip – It is recommended to grasp the steering wheel firmly during adverse weather conditions and not to make any quick or sudden movements. Holding the wheel steady through the heavy wind, snow, rain, and ice will allow for drivers to have more control over their vehicle.
- Braking and Acceleration – It is advised not to do anything forcefully in bad weather. Therefore it is best to pump your brakes when it is required to slow down quickly in slippery conditions. This will reduce your chance of locking your tires and help you remain in control. In cars with anti-lock braking systems, press and hold the brake as far as possible in emergency situations. The ABS will prevent the brakes from locking and allow you to steer around obstacles.
- Black Ice – Black ice is a thin layer of transparent ice that forms when temperatures are nearing freezing. It gives the appearance that the road is wet, although ice has already formed. Some clues that there may be black ice include; ice build-up in mirror arms, or top of the windshield, and there is no spray from the tires on vehicles traveling in front of you.
- Bridges – Drivers should use extra caution when they are approaching bridges as they typically freeze first and often go untreated for ice and snow as other areas of the road.
- Mountain Driving – While driving through mountains we should be aware of large wind gusts and pay attention for emergency vehicles and snowplows. If there is an avalanche zone nearby, do not stop in this zone.
- Road Signs – Often times, drivers will find themselves in trouble when they do not follow the road signs. These signs have been placed accordingly for a reason, to keep people safe.
- Stranded – If you become stranded while driving, it is best to stay in your vehicle and stay moving to keep warm. During this time the supplies mentioned in step one will be of great value. Furthermore, to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, if it is snowing make sure the exhaust pipes are clear of snow, and open a window downwind for ventilation. Turn on your engine for about 10 minutes each hour.
- Get Off the Road – When conditions seem to be too bad for driving, it is advised to stay off the road, or pull your vehicle over. When doing so, make sure your vehicle is visible to other drivers and is as far as possible off the road.
These tips will be sure to help you avoid being involved in an accident during bad weather conditions and keep you free of harm.
Contact Our Auto Accident Attorneys Today
At The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm, our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to assist all injured victims of auto accidents and will seek the maximum compensation benefits for your damages and losses. Our attorneys have several locations throughout Illinois and Missouri and are able to assist clients throughout each of the states.
Some of the local areas our attorneys serve include:
- Charleston, IL
- St. Louis, MO
- O’Fallon, IL
- Mattoon, IL
- Effingham, IL
- Bellville, IL
- Mt Vernon, IL
- Highland, IL
Of course, our attorneys also serve locations throughout the surrounding cities, states, and suburbs. To learn more about our law firm, or to schedule your free no-obligation consultation, we welcome you to contact us at (217) 394-5885 today.