As the weather turns for the worse this coming winter, there are sure to be snow days that clog up traffic and cause congestion. When a heavy snowstorm rolls through, unfortunately, many drivers fail to adjust their driving behavior and act as if the roads are dry. Some fail to realize that driving the speed limit might not be the best idea when there are five inches of slushy snow on the road. Even worse, it is not uncommon for a driver who causes a crash to blame the crash on the snow, and even claim that you, the victim, were equally, if not more, to blame.
Proving You Had No Hand in Causing the Crash Can be Difficult
According to Best Places, Kansas City gets 15 inches of snow per year on average, and while that may not seem like a lot of snow, all it takes is a few inches to create hazardous conditions. There are two typical problems that come with crashes caused during snowy conditions. The first is that crashes are just more likely to occur in the first place. The second is that it may be easier for the negligent driver to place at least some blame with the other driver who is actually faultless. Not only will there be no skid marks to give clues about what happened (and tire tracks are likely to be flattened over by the time the police arrive for an investigation), but police and insurance companies are more likely to believe that possibly both drivers had a hand in the crash. It can be difficult to prove your innocence in snow-related collisions.
Tips for Driving in the Snow
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) suggests following certain guidelines when driving in the snow, sleet, or icy conditions:
- Drive slowly—Snow reduces the friction on the road, increasing stopping time and causing vehicles to lose control when going around corners or even in a straight line. Certain types of snow, depths, and conditions are more slippery than others, meaning that just because it was safe to drive 30 miles per hour on snow one month, does not mean that it will after the next snow storm;
- Prepare your vehicle—Equip your vehicle with snow tires or tires with good tread. Use chains or studded tires when necessary. Ensure that your windows are cleared of snow and ice when you start driving in the morning, that your window wipers work, and that you can properly defog your window; and
- Be prepared for anything—Keep flares, warm blankets, snacks, water, a shovel, and other equipment in your car during the winter in case of a breakdown or a crash.
Get Compensated for Your Injuries
If you were injured in a traffic collision when there was snow or ice on the ground, you need to work with an attorney who can hold the other party accountable. Reach out to the Kansas City law offices of the Krause & Kinsman Law Firm today to learn how we can help you receive the financial compensation that you deserve.
Adam Krause is a personal injury, mass tort, business litigation, and employment discrimination attorney who practices in Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Law and has been practicing law for several years now. Adam Krause has made a career of taking complicated litigation and presenting it in the most elementary terms for a jury of your peers to understand. Learn more about his experience here.