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Safety strategies for winter driving could reduce car accidents

Winter brings rain, freezing rain and snow to West Virginia, and the slick roads increase the chances of motor vehicle accidents. When people have to travel on wet, icy or snowy roads, they can adopt strategies that could help them maintain control of their vehicles and avoid crashes.

Slippery roads require drivers to give themselves more time to accelerate and brake. Drivers should press the gas pedal with gentle, steady pressure when they need to accelerate. Slow acceleration promotes traction. As for braking, every vehicle needs more braking distance than usual on wet roads. Drivers need to give themselves more space and time to stop their vehicles safely.

Winter conditions demand that people drive more slowly than they do on dry roads. Drivers should not activate cruise control on slippery roads. They should also increase their following distance to 8 to 10 seconds from the minimum of 3 seconds for good conditions.

A well-maintained vehicle has a better chance of handling difficult road conditions. Radial tires should not be mixed with other types of tires, and tires should be inflated to the proper pressure for the season.

Failing to operate a vehicle in a safe manner during bad weather could represent negligent driving. A person hurt by someone who acted negligently behind the wheel might pursue compensation for medical bills and lost income with a personal injury claim. The advice of an attorney may aid the recovery of damages. An attorney may be able to organize evidence about the accident and handle discussions with an insurance adjuster. These services might insulate the victim from insurance company tactics meant to limit the settlement. When necessary, an attorney may file a lawsuit and strive to collect a payout that accurately reflects the extent of the victim's damages.

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