As the winter months set in, West Virginia motorists know that weather conditions change rapidly, which means they can be affected when driving. One weather condition that seems to appear abruptly and limit visibility is fog. And although the studies that have been done over the last 20 years show that fog-related crashes account for a minimal number of all collisions, it is still important to be aware of the role foggy weather can play.
The collected data about car collisions in general and those in which fog played a role over the past 20 years seems to be positive and has continued to follow the trend of gradual decline. However, the numbers do not tell the whole story when it comes to fog-related fatal crashes. These tend to increase during the winter months, from December to February, and in particular regions of the country, such as the Southeast, the Midwest and the South/Gulf Coast. These areas, the data has shown, have the highest prevalence of fatal crashes where fog was a factor.
Another concern when it comes to fog-related fatal accidents is the age of the drivers. There is a higher number of young drivers involved in these accidents than older, more experienced drivers, partly because of the experience and partly because studies have found that younger drivers tend to take longer to react and slow down in certain conditions. Another concern is that fog does seem to play a higher role in multiple-vehicle fatal crashes. This might be due to the fact that fog can complicate situations very quickly.
Drivers should exercise caution when driving if fog begins to set in. They might choose to slow down and be more aware, particularly since foggy conditions often make it more difficult to judge distance and speed correctly. However, the failure to do so might constitute negligence if a collision ensues. In such an event, an injured victim may want to obtain the assistance of a personal injury attorney in seeking compensation from the responsible party for the damages that have been incurred.