During the winter months in Illinois, it’s definitely possible that the road conditions could become treacherous. Anyone who has lived here for a winter knows that icy roads are always possible.
Icy roads are only present for a few months each year, so you may not be as familiar with how to drive under these conditions. Knowing how could save your life and the lives of those around you.
First thing’s first
Safely driving on ice starts with making sure your vehicle can handle it. Are your tires rated for winter? Will you be driving in an area where tire chains are required? In some areas, not even winter tires are enough, but in most urban areas, they do help give you more traction. The fluids in your vehicle need to remain full as well to prevent freezing.
Keep your gas tank at least half full and your battery in good working order so that your vehicle will have power if you get stuck. Do you have a winter emergency kit in your car? The more prepared your vehicle is for the weather, the better it may serve you in less than ideal conditions.
Next, your driving style
Obviously, you wouldn’t drive the same way on snowy or icy roads as you would on dry roads. As a precaution, you should give yourself more room to stop and keep more distance between you and the vehicles around you. The more room you leave for error, the less likely it is that a mistake will result in an accident.
For instance, if you make the mistake of slamming on your brakes or speeding up if the front of your vehicle begins to slide, you could avoid hitting another vehicle if you leave enough space between your cars. Instead, hold the steering wheel steady and ease off the gas until you slow down. If the back end slides, avoid hitting the brakes, and turn your steering wheel in the direction the back end is sliding.
Finally, another driver’s mistake
These simple steps could help you avoid an accident. Of course, staying home when the roads are icy would be best, but if you are like most people, your professional and personal obligations don’t always allow that to happen. While you are out on the road, your vehicle may not be the one that ends up sliding. If another driver makes a mistake, you could pay the price.
If you suffered injuries because another driver’s vehicle slid into yours, you may be entitled to compensation by filing a personal injury claim.