Well, we are barely into 2018 and we’ve already had a very powerful nor’easter that affected nearly the entire east coast. This winter storm was referred to as a bombogenesis or bomb cyclone, which is basically a winter hurricane. Here in Massachusetts, this historic storm dumped 12 to 18 inches of snow in towns and cities like Boston, Framingham, Natick, Newton etc…
Now that the snow has finally stopped, the frigid cold moves in bringing temperatures in the single digits and the wind chill in the negatives. This means that all of the snow and slush will freeze and create dangerous conditions for driving and walking. An increase in accidents and injuries will, inevitably, be seen. Make sure you are prepared and know what to do if you are seriously injured in an accident.
Accidents Caused by Snow and Ice are Very Common
Everyone knows that snow and ice can be a major contributor to car crashes and slip and fall accidents. This is because snow and ice are very slippery conditions that reduce friction. With motor vehicles, including passenger cars and trailer trucks, the tires can be caused to lose friction with the pavement. This can cause a driver to lose control of his or her vehicle even when making routine driving maneuvers. Similarly, the snow and ice can cause your shoes to lose friction with the pavement or cement and result in a slip and fall.
It has been estimated that each year, nearly 25% of weather-related motor vehicle crashes are caused by snow, slush and/or ice. The U.S. Department of Transportation has reported that more than 1,300 deaths occur annually from car crashes caused by snow and ice. They also reported that well over one hundred thousand people are injured in these types of crashes.
With the increase in risk of serious injury or death from motor vehicle accidents related to snow and ice, it is very important that anyone on the roadways and highways in Massachusetts take extra precaution when driving. Also, if you are seriously injured in an accident, it is best to know what to do in order to protect yourself.
Follow These Safety Tips When Driving in Snow and Ice
While we have previously provided you with some tips for safe driving in Massachusetts winter storms, it is always helpful to reiterate and add to the list.
- First thing is first, when driving during a snow storm or after the storm, everyone should reduce their speed and always pay extra attention to the road conditions and other drivers and pedestrians. The snow and ice can cause cars to slide and lose control when trying to stop or slow down. Operating at a reduced speed will decrease the risk of losing control of your car and provide more time to come to a complete stop if you do lose control.
- Drivers should accelerate and decelerate slowly in the snow and on icy roads. This will also help reduce the chances of skidding uncontrollably and crash into another car, truck or person.
- Keep a safe distance from other cars or trucks on the roads during the wintery conditions. On normal dry pavement, the two-second and three second rule is recommended. This means that a driver should stay at least two to three seconds behind another vehicle directly in front of his or her vehicle. When driving in the snow and ice, a driver should increase the time of this rule to at least eight to ten seconds. This will provide additional time to stop or make a safe maneuver in the event of a sudden emergency or if you or someone else loses control of their car.
Sometimes, motor vehicle accidents are unavoidable despite the most careful driving techniques. This is because, unfortunately, not everyone is as careful as we should be. If you or someone you know are injured in an accident that was caused by a careless driver in the snow and icy conditions, be sure to know the Three Most Important Steps to Take After a Motor Vehicle Accident. Following these steps is a great way to protect your legal rights to compensation if you are seriously injured in an accident.
Speak With An Experienced Injury Lawyer Today
Mahaney & Pappas, LLP has over 35 years of experience handling personal injury claims. We have successfully represented clients, who were seriously injured in auto accidents in the snow and icy conditions we see every winter here in Massachusetts. Our experience and knowledge of injury cases provide accident victims and their families an advantage against insurance companies when pursuing fair compensation for their injuries and damages.
Call us today at (508) 879-3500 or contact us online to get a case evaluation or answers to your questions.