No matter how good a driver you consider yourself, you will sometimes face dangerous driving conditions that can get you and your passengers into a whole lot of trouble if you’re not careful. Fact is, when you’re driving in any condition, good or bad, you should always expect the unexpected.
According to Chicago personal injury attorney, Briskman, Briskman, and Greenberg, no one ever thinks a vehicular accident is going to happen to them. But every year, thousands of unsuspecting motorists find themselves in a bad accident that’s all too often not their fault.
Data from the Illinois Department of Transportation reveals that more than 310,000 car accidents occur in the state every year, many of them involving fatalities. This shockingly high number means that nearly 3 out of ten Illinois residents are involved in car wreck every year. It doesn’t matter where you live in the U.S. If you think a car accident can’t happen to you, think again.
According to a recent report, driving a car or truck might be a common everyday experience for most U.S. residents, it doesn’t lessen the danger associated with driving. Automobile accidents occur on a daily basis, but many of these can be avoided is drivers would simply educate themselves on how to deal with dangerous road conditions.
That said, here are some of the most dangerous road conditions you should consider before heading out in your car, truck, or SUV.
As heavy winds sweep across a roadbed, they can get under your vehicle and cause a momentary loss of control. Heavy wind gusts can actually push your vehicle around, giving you both steering and breaking problems. You might even feel like steering your vehicle is impossible for a few seconds at a time.
The National Weather Service states that back in 2016, 43 motorists perished from wind-related accidents. The service goes on to say that the worst place to be during a windstorm is driving in your vehicle.
In order to minimize the risk of accident during heavy wind gusts, you must keep both your hands gripped to the wheel while watching out for other vehicles that might be affected, such as big semis and busses.
Rain Soaked Roads
When heavy rain occurs it can result in puddle-covered roads. Even slight dips in the road’s surface will allow water to pool, lessening the ability for your tires to maintain their normal traction.
If you travel over a puddle on a highway at highspeed, you could easily hydroplane. At the same time, you might cause damage to your brakes.
A whopping 70 percent of all weather-related traffic incidents and collisions occur on wet roads says the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). When roads are wet and therefore slick, you need to pay close attention to puddles and pools, and above all, you must slow down.
If at all possible, avoid roads altogether where you are certain puddles will form during heavy rain events. Also, leave lots of space between you and the vehicle driving in front of you. Give yourself enough time and room to stop safely at intersections and traffic lights.
Black Ice Dangers
True to its name, black ice is difficult to spot for most drivers, especially when they are more concerned with snow. If your tires encounter patches of black ice, you will likely lose traction. Your steering will be inhibited causing your vehicle to possibly veer off the road and even collide with another vehicle and/or obstacle.
When driving any type of vehicle in winter conditions (even a four-wheel drive model like a Jeep Wrangler), you need to take it slow and easy. As you pull away from intersections and traffic lights, accelerate slowly instead of punching the gas.
Do not “slam on the brakes” while driving in wintering conditions. Give yourself plenty of room between you and the vehicle in front of you.
Fog can be particularly dangerous for drivers since it seriously limits visibility. Not even airline pilots like to fly in the fog. Fog makes it difficult if not impossible to spot the vehicles in front of you, and if a traffic signal has changed, or where a road suddenly bends.
Surprisingly, the U.S. DOT states that only 3 percent of all traffic accidents occur during foggy conditions, despite the danger the weather condition poses. Perhaps this is due to drivers having the good sense to stay off the road while until the fog lifts.