Personal Injury Lawyers Bronx and Westchester County, New York

10 Winter Driving Tips to Help You Stay Safe

Street view of downtown NYC during heavy snow.

Experienced NYC car accident attorneys reveal what drivers should know

The winter months can bring all kinds of nasty weather, from snow to sleet to freezing rain. Driving in the winter can be especially dangerous and increase the risk of weather-related car accidents. Every year, there are serious crashes on New York roadways. Drivers and passengers can suffer serious injuries, which are sometimes fatal.

We can’t control the weather. But there are steps you can take to help you stay safe on the road in wintry conditions.

1. Take it slow.

All motorists have a responsibility to adjust their driving for the weather conditions. Snow and ice on the road make it harder to control your vehicle and bring it to a complete stop. Also, increase the following distance for the car in front of you. You need to give yourself enough time to slow down or come to a stop safely.

2. Don’t crowd the plow.

If there’s a snowplow ahead of you on the road, give it plenty of space. Plows tend to drive slow, but they often make wide turns, overlap lanes, and exit the road frequently.

3. Know what to do in an emergency.

Have a plan for what you’ll do if your car gets stuck in the snow. Stay with the vehicle after you call for help. Put bright markers on the antenna and keep the inside light on so you can be seen more easily. Run your car enough to stay warm, but not for long periods of time.

4. Keep needed supplies in your trunk.

These include a shovel, brush, and ice scraper. Sand or kitty litter can help if your car gets stuck. Be sure to have a working flashlight, jumper cables, emergency markers, and flares. Also keep blankets, water, and non-perishable food.

5. Check car tires.

Monitor the air pressure once a month and before long trips. Look for any damage and inspect the tread. Replace tires as recommended.

6. Make sure your car is ready for winter.

Have a mechanic check your battery and charging system. Be sure the lights, wipers, and cooling system are all working properly.

7. Dress your child in layers for car seats.

Heavy coats can interfere with the harness on a child seat. Once the harness is snug, put blankets or coats around your child for warmth.

8. Secure your floor mats.

Mats made of thicker material are great when there is snow and slush on the ground. But they can also interfere with the accelerator and brake pedal if they slide on the floor. Be sure mats are designed to fit your car and that they are installed properly and secured with retention clips.

9. Get to know your vehicle’s safety technologies.

It’s helpful to know how features such as antilock brake systems perform in wintry weather.

10. Plan ahead.

Check the weather forecast and traffic reports before your drive. Consider postponing your trip, if possible. Consider a different route if it looks like you will encounter delays.

Injured in a New York crash? Get the legal help you need.

If you were injured in a crash in the Bronx or anywhere in New York, it’s important to get legal advice from an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Giampa Law has been fighting for the injured for decades. We build strong cases and fight to get our clients the best possible results.

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

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