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Wet weather causes fatal car accidents: tips to stay safe

These blogs are posted on behalf of Seidel, Cohen, Hof & Reid, LLC, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the firm or its attorneys. The information presented in this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice.

There are many contributing factors to car crashes, but Pennsylvania drivers should be particularly concerned with wet roads. In November 2016, it was reported that wet roads caused a fatal car crash in Lebanon. Some drivers may not assume driving in the rain poses serious risks. All drivers should take the following tips to heart to make the roads safer for everyone.

Visibility is necessary

Prevention of car crashes begins with ensuring the vehicle is in safe condition. First, drivers should clean windows, windshields and mirrors of any dust, fingerprints or dirt. Proper visibility is crucial to driving safely in any weather conditions, but even more so when it is raining because it reduces visibility. Drivers should also utilize air conditioning and defrosters if windows fog up.

Slow and steady makes it safe

Unfavorable conditions and inclement weather means all drivers should adjust their speed. While rain may not seem particularly dangerous to some drivers, wet roads significantly reduce traction. Driving slower, leaving more space between cars and braking earlier all reduce the chances of hydroplaning or skidding out.

Cruise control means less control

Hydroplaning must be avoided at all costs. Easing off the gas pedal shifts the weight of the vehicle and is one of the best techniques to stop hydroplaning. If cruise control is being used, the accelerator cannot be eased off slightly. This makes drivers unable to shift the weight or regain traction. Avoiding cruise control makes it easier to react to hydroplaning and helps drivers stay focused on all functions of driving.

Escaping hydroplaning

Pennsylvania drivers should be accustomed to reaction techniques. When hydroplaning, it is important to stay calm; avoid slamming the brake. Instead, ease off the accelerator and turn the steering wheel in the direction the car is skidding to gain control. Knowing how to react to emergencies helps drivers anticipate instances that might otherwise be unpredictable.

Driving a car in hazardous conditions requires preparation, practice and caution. There does not have to be a blizzard to cause serious injuries and fatalities. The smallest amount of precipitation combined with oils on the road can make the road slick and dangerous. Drivers must be aware of the impact that rain has on traction and the ability to control their vehicles. No one should underestimate the serious consequences wet weather has on driving safely. Anyone who has become injured from a car crash in Pennsylvania should consult a personal injury attorney to know their options and potential compensation.

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