Onslaught of snow in Massachusetts increases accidents on state highways
During the winter in Suffolk County, snow coats the area and turns it into a winter wonderland. However, the beauty of the snow is quickly forgotten by individuals who get into their car to go to work or run errands due to the dangers it creates for drivers. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 6,301,000 vehicle accidents occur in the country every year. Fifteen percent of these crashes happen during the presence of snow or sleet and 13 percent occur due to icy pavement.
This increase of accidents during the winter can be attributed to ice and black ice on the roads. Ice on the roads can make it more difficult for drivers to steer and brake and also decrease their vehicle’s tires ability to get good traction on the road beneath them.
An increase in accidents
Recently, an onslaught of snow in Massachusetts during the month of December increased the number of accidents and injuries in the state. According to Mass Live, two snow storms in the period of three days reduced visibility for drivers out on the roads and also covered the state’s roads in snow.
Not only was there a large amount of snow, but the storm occurred at a particularly busy time for drivers, during the evening commute. This spurred the governor to issue an order to release all non-emergency government employees by 1:30 in the afternoon and encouraged private businesses to do the same. Although the governor issued this order to prevent an increased number of accidents on the state’s roads, the state police reported that there were multiple accidents and spinouts on the state’s highways. On one of the highways in particular, a tractor trailer jackknifed and blocked three lanes of traffic on the road.
Winter weather driving guidelines
Although the best way to avoid an accident during winter weather is to stay indoors, this is not always a viable option. If you need to travel during a snowstorm, make sure that your vehicle is properly prepared for winter driving by clearing the windshield of snow, stocking your car with winter driving equipment and driving with your headlights on. When you are driving:
· Leave enough room for your vehicle to make a complete stop.
· Keep in mind that the posted speed limits are for dry pavement and your speed should be adjusted according to the current weather conditions.
· Avoid using cruise control.
· Look at the traffic directly in front of you and several cars ahead of you at all times.
Unfortunately, not every driver is prepared to drive during the winter or takes the proper precautions to avoid accidents. If you were injured in an accident caused by a driver that failed to follow necessary winter driving techniques, contact an attorney that can guide you through the legal process.