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Snow can be an enjoyable experience for people within all age groups. The changed landscape opens up many opportunities for fun that weren’t available in the warmer weather. However, a winter wonderland can turn into a frosty nightmare for any driver not taking the right precautions, similar to driving in the rain. Here are some tips on how to minimize the risk of having an accident in Pennsylvania during winter.
1. Tires Make All the Difference
When it comes to not slipping on the ice of the roads, what is more important than the part of the car that’s actually making contact with it? The reason that your car loses control on slippery surfaces is due to the lack of traction from your tires. Winter tires are designed to have larger tread patterns and softer rubber, therefore providing much greater traction on snow and ice. Winter tires may wear easily under typical pavement conditions, but when the snow comes down, they
are the optimal choice. When getting your car equipped with winter tires, be sure a full vehicle inspection is conducted, as defective vehicles are easier to lose control of.
2. Drive Slowly
Frozen water on the ground scientifically leads to only one thing: less friction. Less friction means that there’s less resistance between your car and the road, and in turn, less time to do maneuvers like turning, accelerating, and braking. While driving in the winter, practice taking more time to come to a stop at a red light or stop sign. Increase the distance you usually keep between your car and other cars, and avoid quick acceleration out of a stop and high speed turns. Take your time driving in the snow.
3. Visibility Is Key
When the flurries of winter come down and take over the roadways, the street can become a very chaotic place. One of the most important aspects for a safe driver to have is awareness of their environment and those around them. To increase this awareness, take the following precautions.
Make sure to clear the snow and ice from all of your car’s windows, as well as the headlights. Turning on the defrost setting or preheating your car before use is one method of guaranteeing clear windows. Replacing the standard windshield wipers with those equipped to handle snowfall is helpful in maintaining a clear view of what’s in front of you. Similarly, make sure that the windshield washer system contains an antifreeze or anti-ice fluid.
Taking time to put these safeguards in place before you hit the road will ensure that your visibility is not an issue.
4. Just Stay Home
Sometimes, when it comes to staying in control on snow covered roads, the safest option is to avoid them all together. Pay attention to the weather forecast. If you’re driving to/from an isolated area, an unexpected snowstorm could either leave you stranded, or driving in unsafe conditions. If traveling long distances, it might be smart to stay in a hotel when the snow rolls in. Waiting for the snow plows to do their job will not only be beneficial to your car, but to your personal safety. If it’s an emergency and you absolutely need to get in your car and go, follow the tips provided previously. In many cases, however, if the weather is bad enough, school and/or work will be cancelled anyway, so stay home and enjoy the winter fun.
If you have been injured in accident while driving Pennsylvania, or have any questions about safe driving, please contact Pennsylvania Car Accident Lawyers today.
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