Motorists may feel the worst is over after the snow and ice melt away. However, road conditions are just as dangerous in the springtime. This time of year introduces a new set of hazards despite the warm weather and sunshine. The frequency of spring driving accidents is due to drastic changes in the weather, and other factors unique to this time of year.
Mann, Wyatt & Tanksley and our car accident attorneys have seen firsthand how spring road conditions can cause tragic accidents.
“Many drivers underestimate road conditions in the springtime, which can lead to tragic consequences,” explains Scott Mann, car accident attorney. “There is an increase of severe inclement weather in the spring. There are more rain showers, thunderstorms, hail, and flooding. More water on the ground usually results in slippery road surfaces, which can lead to more auto accidents.”
Forty-six percent of all weather-related auto accidents between 2002 and 2012 were caused by rainfall (Federal Highway Administration). The escalation of thunderstorms and flooding during springtime results in slippery road surfaces. This decreases the traction of your tires, which makes stopping difficult and can increase the risk of hydroplaning across the road.
The after-effects of winter have a devastating impact on road surfaces. Snow plows, sand, salt, and ice during the cold months create potholes and cracks that weren’t there before. The warm weather of spring also results in increased activity of animals, bicycles, runners, and pedestrians. Motorists need to be aware of their presence — especially when visibility is low at dusk and dawn.
“Motorists during the springtime need to take precautions to better ensure their safety,” explains Mike Wyatt, car accident attorney. “Make sure your headlights and wiper blades are working properly to increase visibility. Your tire pressure will also be low due to the cold winter temperatures, so make sure your tires are safely inflated. When it’s raining, decrease your speed so you can stop on time and avoid collisions.”