When you are making plans to drive in winter weather in New York, it is critical to prepare yourself and your vehicle so that you can avoid a traffic collision. Although many car accidents that happen in the winter still result from another driver’s negligence, wintry elements can increase the risk of a serious injury if a wreck does occur. Vehicle occupants can sustain debilitating and deadly injuries when collisions involve vehicles spinning out of control on an icy road, or when low visibility leads to a high-speed rear-end collision. The following are some tips from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to help you avoid a serious crash this winter.
Prep Your Vehicle for Winter Driving
It is critical to prepare your vehicle for winter. Be sure to have your vehicle tuned up, and consider snow tires. If you do plan to use snow tires, make sure you have them installed before it starts to snow. You should also have your mechanic check the battery, coolant, and windshield wipers on your car to ensure that you have everything you need to drive in wintry weather.
Adjust Your Driving for Dangerous Roads
You need to get ready for driving in wintry weather. Plan to slow down on the roads in the event a road is slick or icy, or in case sleet or snow starts to come down. You may also need a longer following distance and more time to stop when roads have snow or ice.
Be Ready for a Winter Emergency
While you never want to experience a roadside emergency, you should prepare for one that could happen in the winter. You could be involved in a fender bender, or your car could break down. If it is snowing outside and below freezing, you will need supplies to ensure that you remain safe and healthy until you can get roadside assistance. Accordingly, keep a blanket, jumper cables, emergency lights, and a flashlight in your vehicle.
Wear a Seat Belt
While wearing a seat belt cannot prevent a winter driving accident, it can allow a person to survive a serious crash that occurs in wintry weather. Not only should all adult occupants be properly restrained with a seat belt, but children need to be in age-appropriate and size-appropriate car seats and properly buckled in.
Seek Advice From a New York Car Crash Attorney
As you likely know, since New York is a no-fault state for auto accident purposes. What does this ultimately mean for seeking compensation for injuries in a winter collision? You must seek compensation first by filing an auto insurance claim through your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. Then, if you can work with a car accident attorney to prove that your injuries meet the “serious injury” threshold you can be eligible to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. Of course, it is much better to avoid a collision if you can. Yet avoiding all collisions is impossible when there are negligent and reckless drivers on the road.
If you were injured in a winter driving accident, an experienced New York car accident attorney at our firm can assist you. Contact Leitner Varughese Warywoda PLLC today for more information.