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Safety Tips for Driving in Heavy Snowfall

Posted on in Car Accidents

winter driving tips, Illinois car accident attorney, Illinois personal injury lawyer, When it comes to Chicago winters, two things are for certain: driving in heavy snowfall and subsequent car crashes. CBS Chicago reported that as of March 2014, the city was just 10 inches shy of the all-time snowfall record in one season, which was 89 inches in the winter of 1978-79. To say that the city experiences harsh winters with high levels of precipitation is an understatement.

These type of weather conditions lead to problems on the road and an increase in motor vehicle accidents. When it snows, vehicles get stuck in drifts or drivers lose control on icy surfaces. Visibility while driving is also an issue when commuting to and from the city. Accidents at slow speeds are more common due to vehicles sliding through stop signs or traffic lights, which can still lead to serious neck, back, and head injuries.

The United States Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration reports an estimated 1,312,000 weather-related motor vehicle crashes each year with over 480,000 reported injuries. The majority of these occur due to heavy rainfall, but other wintry conditions help contribute to this high number such as:

  • snow or sleet;
  • icy pavement;
  • snowy or slushy pavement; and
  • presence of fog.

Residents of Chicago and the surrounding areas know all too well what is involved to prepare their vehicles for the winter and the region's heavy snowfall, but it is best to keep these driving tips in mind:

  • make sure your tires are properly inflated;
  • ensure your gas tank is at least half full to avoid gas line freezing;
  • avoid using cruise control when driving on slippery roads; and
  • watch weather reports before embarking on long road trips.

If you do get caught in a snowstorm, drive slowly and avoid hard braking. Increase driving distance between vehicles. Even if you are in control of your vehicle, you cannot control the cars around you.

Driving in dangerous weather conditions can cause a pile up of traffic accidents leading to an increased number of injuries and fatalities during the winter months. If you have been a victim in a motor vehicle accident in Illinois and have suffered injuries, contact an experienced Chicago car accident attorney today.
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