Spring Rainstorms Can Cause Car Accidents - Take Precautions

Spring Rainstorms Can Cause Car Accidents – Take Precautions

by Andrus Becki

Spring rainstorms can be beautiful as they bring forth the wonderful flowers and blossoms we’ve been waiting for all winter. Rainstorms can also be extremely dangerous when you’re on the road. In fact, rain causes thousands of accidents every year, especially in otherwise dry areas where people aren’t quite as used to driving in large amounts of water. Drivers across the country (and the world) need to better understand exactly what causes these kinds of accidents and how to avoid them.

What Kind of Driver Are You?

When driving in hazardous conditions it seems that there are two kinds of drivers – one who drives very aggressively and the other that is nervous and scared and drives slowly to avoid any possibility of crashing. Unfortunately, both types of drivers pose a risk to others on the road.

The aggressive driver is usually speeding down the highway, annoyed at other drivers that are taking it easy in hazardous conditions. These are the drivers that lose control or don’t see another driver in front of them because of low visibility.

Then there’s the timid driver overdoing it when it comes to being careful. This driver drives well under the speed limit and is often rear-ended as people come up on them quickly. This kind of driver may also pull over to the side of the road from time to time, putting themselves in harm’s way of those that could slide off the road or not see them in the first place.

Hopefully, you are the driver that has found a balance between the aggressive and timid driver, especially when it comes to driving in dangerous conditions. It’s a good idea to check yourself as you are driving during one of the next spring rainstorms.

Risky Conditions

You may be wondering exactly what makes the roads so risky during spring rainstorms. There are two main culprits:

  • Slippery Roads – Slippery roads during rainstorms can be extra scary as your chances of hydroplaning are increased. In addition, when it first starts to rain, the grease and oil on the surface of the street rise to the top and create a slippery surface, making it tough to stop your car before hitting another one in front of you.
  • Reduced Visibility – When it’s raining extra hard, sometimes your windshield wipers can’t even keep up, making it tough to see the cars in front and around you. It can be extra scary driving down the highway when another car, or especially a semi-truck, passes you and kicks up large amounts of water onto your windshield. For a few moments, you have zero visibility. This reduced visibility is sure to be a prime time for accidents to occur.

Tips for Staying Safe in Spring Rainstorms

  1. Drive slowly – While this may seem obvious, driving under the speed limit is okay during hazardous conditions. You don’t want to be too timid and cause accidents but driving slowly enough to give you extra time to react to others on the road is a smart idea.
  2. Make sure you always have functional windshield wipers and fluid – There’s nothing worse than to be stuck in a heavy rainstorm and have windshield wipers that aren’t doing the job. It can be just as bad to have a dirty windshield and not be able to use wiper fluid to help you see better. Be proactive in maintaining your car, including the wipers and fluid.
  3. Watch the car in front of you – It can be tough to see very far in front of you during a severe rainstorm, so keeping your eyes on the car in front of you can help guide you down the road safely. If the car in front of you steps on the brakes, you do the same. Follow at a safe distance but stay close enough to be able always to see the car in front of you.
  4. Don’t brake quickly – Breaking quickly can cause you to skid, and because the roads are slippery, you can slide and lose traction. If sliding does occur, try not to turn your wheel but steer straight until you feel your car regaining traction with the road.
  5. Avoid driving in standing water – You may have noticed during past storms that the middle lane of traffic is usually more clear of standing water than the side lanes. Stay in the middle lanes if possible and avoid those big puddles to keep a tight grip on the road.
  6. Defog your windows – Foggy windows can decrease your visibility fast. Keep your defog on in your car or use the air conditioning to blow the cool air at your windshield and back window.
  7. Do not pull over if possible – You may be tempted to pull over when you get nervous driving in the rain, but if possible, don’t. With the decreased visibility and increased slipping, other cars could easily hit you on accident. If you must pull over, try to find a parking lot where you can stop safely, or if you’re on the highway, turn your hazards on to bring extra attention to yourself.
  8. Leave extra room between you and the car in front of you – Leaving extra room during low-visibility driving is always a good idea. If the road is slippery, you give your car more time to gain traction and stop. If you can’t see well, you give yourself more time to brake.

If You’ve Been in An Accident

If, after doing all you can to stay safe, you still end up in an accident that causes injuries, contact your legal team, Wormington & Bollinger, at your first chance. While some accidents can be just an accident, others happen because of negligence and failure to drive safely. Wormington & Bollinger will help you obtain compensation for your wrecked car, medical bills, and more. Don’t let an accident during spring rainstorms ruin your life. Let us help. Contact our team today to get started.