5 Types of Weather That Increase Your Risk of a Car Accident
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, America averages almost 6 million car crashes annually and approximately 21% of those are due to weather conditions. While no one can control the weather, a little forethought and planning can go a long way towards ensuring you reach your destination safely and in one piece. Of course, even the most careful planning isn’t always enough when Mother Nature is in a mood. However, knowing the top types of weather that increase the risk of an auto accident can help you get a head start on avoiding one, and some of those just may surprise you.
Dense or Excessive Fog
Fog is common regardless of season as the temperatures can shift without warning. The result is often thick, dense patches of surrounding air struggling to regain balance and causing visual interference in the process. The common-sense approach is to hit the high beams hoping for more visibility, but that actually has the opposite effect. Instead, keep your low beams on and watch the road. Fog is responsible for 25,000 accidents annually and is considered the top weather-related danger for new or inexperienced drivers, so don’t be afraid or too proud to pull off the road and wait it out if need be.
Snow and Ice
Winter weather is synonymous with the Midwest and Michigan ranges between 30 and over 200 inches of snow annually depending on the region. Most residents are acclimated or at least know how to become somewhat prepared for winter driving needs. But that still doesn’t guarantee they’ll survive the season. Nationwide, approximately 15-24% of auto accidents occur due to snow, slush, and icy conditions. Prepare, slow down, and keep the number of your Michigan car accident attorney on you at all times.
High winds are common during any season, but they especially occur during cold or wet weather. This combination can create a recipe for disaster. But even without the extra snow, ice, or wet conditions, heavy winds are dangerous on their own. They’re capable of dislodging branches, debris, and various building materials which may disrupt driving routes. High winds can also create an uncomfortable or stressful commute as they can toss a vehicle around or push it into another lane altogether.
Sunny and Warm Weather
Warmer months provide some of the best driving opportunities, but sunny and warm weather can also lead to unexpected auto accidents. Sun glare can limit driver vision, especially during morning or evening commutes. Warm weather encourages more travelers and adventurers to hit the road. Bicyclists and pedestrians add a dangerous element in the warmer months. More teen drivers are out and about during the spring and summer months. And construction plans often launch when the weather breaks.
Any Type of Rain
Midwesterners may enjoy an occasional rain shower, but most know heavy rain isn’t easy to drive in. Truth is, any type of rain, even drizzle, tops the list for the riskiest weather for a potential auto accident. In fact, rain accounts for approximately 46% of weather-related accidents which is more than the accident totals from all the other risky weather types combined. And wet pavement with or without continuing rain is even worse since it accounts for 75% of annual weather-related crashes. Slow down, get a good grip on the road, and give us a call if you still need the right Michigan car accident attorney to help you get back on the road after fighting with Mother Nature.