The Common Dangers of Winter Driving

A man drives a car amid winter weatherThere are dangers associated with driving at every time of year. While winter is not the most dangerous time of year to drive (that distinction belongs to the summer), there are still accidents that take place every day and seasonal factors that cause those accidents.

If you’re going to be safe and avoid accidents, you have to know what the risk factors are. Here are some of the risks associated with driving in the winter:

Visibility Issues

It’s hard to drive safely if you can’t see where you’re going. Depending on where in the country you live, you likely deal with more snow, rain, and fog in the winter than any other season. These conditions all make it more difficult to see, nearly impossible in some situations. Additionally, the sun sets earlier in the winter so you’re spending more time driving in the darkness.  Reducing your speed to allow more time to react, or staying off the road entirely if that is a possibility, are both options to reduce the risk.

Poor Road Conditions

This is again partially dependent on what the climate is like in your part of the country. But the vast majority of places will deal with slick, icy, and/or snowy road for at least part of the winter, which can lead to accidents. And when the roads are in these conditions, the traction on your tires is less effective. Black ice also poses a major threat since you can’t actually see it until it’s too late. Again, reduction of speed or staying of the roadway entirely until conditions improve if possible are your best choices to reduce your risk in this situation.

Vehicle Maintenance

Winters can be tough on your vehicle, especially if you live in an area where if it’s often below freezing this time of year. Maintenance becomes extra important during this time of year to avoid major issues on the road. Tires, windshield wipers, and your defrosting system are all things that should be working perfectly if you want to be safe on the road during these months.

Drunk Driving

Winter is not the season with the most incidents of drunk driving – that would again be summer. But there are multiple events throughout these months that are associated with drinking alcohol – holiday parties, New Years, the Super Bowl. If you’re going to be on the road during any of these times, it’s important to be vigilant to avoid any erratic (possibly drunk) drivers.  Slowing down to keep them ahead of you, and/or moving over a lane or two  if possible, are two possible ways to accomplish this.

Hopefully this knowledge can help you avoid danger this winter. But if you do find yourself in an accident, 4n6XPRT Systems can offer you an accident reconstruction report.  Our forensic accident reconstruction and investigation software is highly accurate, providing you with the information you need for court, insurance, or any other purpose. To learn more about the software and services we can provide you, give us a call at 619-464-3478 today!