A sudden or prolonged rainstorm can create hazardous road conditions, increasing the number of severe car crashes. Although rain is often blamed for causing car accidents, the real reason for the crash may be due to the behavior of one of the drivers—and victims could be owed payment when someone is injured or killed during a rainy day crash.
How Drivers May Be Liable for a Car Accident in the Rain
While no driver can control the weather, each one has a duty to drive as safely as possible during a rainstorm. A driver who does not adjust to slippery roads, impaired visibility, and other conditions of heavy rain may be held responsible for paying medical costs and loss of income to drivers and passengers after a collision.
If you were injured in a rain-related car accident, you may be owed compensation from a driver who fails to:
- Adjust speed. Many drivers do not recognize the hazards of driving too fast, and may speed even during inclement weather. Unfortunately, driving too quickly in the rain often leads to hydroplaning, a dangerous loss of traction caused by water pooling on the road surface. Hydroplaning can cause drivers to lose control of the vehicle, striking cars ahead of them or in adjacent lanes.
- Follow at a safe distance. Drivers are expected to increase their following distance by several car lengths in a rainstorm, giving them more distance to brake on a slippery road surface. Following too closely prevents a driver from having enough room to react to a sudden situation, and is a common factor in rear-end crashes.
- Perform proper maintenance on the vehicle. All vehicles must have the ability to handle the effects of a rainstorm in order to be considered roadworthy in bad weather. Nonfunctional windshield wipers, brakes, headlights and brake lights, or windshield defoggers all place a driver at risk of causing a crash due to decreased visibility.
- Follow the law. Reckless, aggressive, or irresponsible driving activities can be even more dangerous in poor weather. Drivers who are distracted, intoxicated, or fail to follow traffic laws can face both criminal and federal charges for the accidents they cause.
Speak to a Car Accident Lawyer Today
If you are having trouble recovering after a car accident, our injury attorneys have offices in Illinois and Missouri to advise you on your next steps and legal rights. Contact the Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm via our online contact form to schedule an appointment.