The winters in Iowa have a reputation for bringing extreme weather patterns, and this year is no exception. With heavy snowfall, storm warnings and nighttime temperatures well below freezing, this winter has been particularly treacherous for drivers. According to the Iowa Department of Transportation, this December has seen a 50-percent increase in traffic deaths compared to December 2015.
The vast majority of these tragedies could have been avoided if motorists had adjusted their behavior to the weather. Sadly, many drivers choose to tailgate and speed in icy conditions – and other road users pay the price.
If you were hurt or lost a family member due to a negligent driver, contact a Cedar Rapids accident attorney from Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, PLC. You may be entitled to compensation for lost income, health-care bills and other damages.
Call 319-393-1020 to schedule a free consultation. You can also visit the USAttorneys website to learn more about car accident injury lawsuits in Iowa.
6 Tips to Stay Safe while Driving in Winter Weather
Snow, ice and sleet can have a profound impact on your vehicle’s handling. These conditions can also reduce visibility and make it difficult for you to notice other vehicles and hazards in the road.
According to the Federal Highway Administration, slushy or icy roads contribute to 24 percent of all weather-related car accidents. These crashes account for more than 116,800 injuries and at least 1,300 fatalities every year.
Even if you are accustomed to driving in poor weather, you should never underestimate the dangers of icy roads. Here are six tips to help you avoid accidents and injuries in the winter:
- Check the tread and pressure of your tires. Properly maintained tires are less likely to skid;
- Keep a windshield scraper in your car to clear ice from your windows and mirrors. You should never pour hot water on your windshield because this could cause the glass to crack;
- Use your low-beam headlights when driving through snow;
- Slow down and extend your following distance. This will reduce the likelihood of skidding and causing rear-end accidents;
- Avoid driving over flat, glassy patches on the road, which are indicative of ice; and
- Before you hit the road, check the National Weather Service for extreme weather warnings.
No matter how safely you drive, you are always at risk of being involved in an accident. All it takes is one negligent motorist to cause a severe crash.
You should be prepared for the worst by keeping these items in your vehicle:
- A reflective vest;
- Tow rope;
- Hazard warning triangle;
- Spare wheel, fully inflated and in good working order;
- First-aid kit;
- Warm clothing; and
- Food and water.
If you or someone you love was injured in a crash with a negligent driver, contact Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, PLC. A Cedar Rapids accident attorney will evaluate your case to determine if you have grounds for a personal-injury claim. Call 319-393-1020 to schedule a free consultation.