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Black Ice: An Invisible Threat

Posted on in Driving Safety

black ice car accidentsIn the midst of a comfortably warm winter, uncomfortable road conditions continue to plague drivers throughout the country. Dips below freezing and corresponding rises back into the mid to high 30s continue to negatively impact road conditions. In the state of Illinois, black ice has become a lethal threat.

Less than six weeks into the new year and already a number of fatal crashes have tragically occurred throughout the state. In one of the worst driving days in recent memory, black ice caused upwards of 130 vehicular crashes across Illinois on Wednesday, January 24. According to Chicago’s ABC7, three of the collisions proved fatal.

If you or a member of your family are involved in a vehicular collision this winter season, contact an experienced Lake County personal injury attorney today.

What is Black Ice?

According to experts with the Weather Channel, black ice can come from a number of different sources. Most notably, black ice is caused by a temperature increase that can melt snow already on the roadways and turn falling snow into rain, followed by a drop in temperatures below freezing while the roadway is still wet. The result is a dangerous, essentially invisible, layer of ice.

How to Avoid Accidents While Driving on Black Ice

Even in the midst of a winter with disturbing weather fluctuations, Illinoisans have to get to work. While black ice can be hard to detect, there are a few simple tactics drivers can utilize to increase their chances of making it to and from work safely.

  • Use Caution When Turning: Black ice can be dangerous even on straightaways, but it tends to be increasingly problematic when drivers approach turns in the road. If your area has seen weather fluctuations or rain, it may be wise to practice extreme caution when taking turns. Turning your wheel increases the chances of sliding on ice and potentially losing steering control. Therefore, it is best to slow down.
  • Keep Your Distance: This tip may seem obvious, but braking, especially at high speeds, is often the time in which one’s vehicle can be the most susceptible to sliding on black ice. Increasing the distance between the vehicle in front of you and your own vehicle can enable you to decrease speed through simply removing your foot from the accelerator.

Contact an Experienced Attorney

Despite our best efforts, accidents do happen. The likelihood of vehicular crashes increase exponentially when black ice is present. If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, contact an experienced and knowledgeable Lake County personal injury attorney.

Sources:

https://weather.com/science/weather-explainers/news/black-ice-winter-weather-explainer

http://abc7chicago.com/weather/black-ice-causes-more-than-130-crashes-on-chicago-area-expressways/2983201/

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