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3 Winter Driving Tips from a Personal Injury Lawyer

As I’m writing this, its nasty outside! School was cancelled last night even before a drop of freezing rain came down today. That’s because what the weather brought us today was a sheet of ice. It’s covering everything outside, including our roads (despite our road crews’ best efforts).

As a Kansas City personal injury lawyer who spends a lot of time working on car crash cases, I get a ton of calls soon after a winter storm because some people unfortunately do not change their driving habits in freezing weather. Here are three winter driving tips that can help you stay safe when the weather is bad.

1. Don’t drive too fast for the conditions.

Although the speed limit says 65, when there’s snow or ice on the ground, you should not drive that fast. You should drive significantly slower than the speed limit in such conditions. This may seem obvious, but stopping and slowing takes much longer when the roads are slick. You may not have any problems getting up to and maintaining the speed limit, but you will have many problems trying to stop to avoid a crash. Slow down!

2. Don’t follow too closely.

Generally speaking, you should follow the three-second rule when it comes to the distance between you and the car in front of you. When the car in front passes an object or a line on the road, it should take you three seconds to pass that same object. In wintry conditions, it should be several more seconds, 5 or even 6. This will buy you more stopping distance in case the car stops suddenly or even just slows to turn.

3. Do maintain your brakes and keep them in good working order.

When was the last time you checked your brakes? You may not notice your brakes are wearing out in good weather, but when the roads are slick, you’ll need to count on those brakes to save yourself from a crash. Don’t go out on the roads in winter weather unless your brakes are in good working order.

Stay safe on the roads in Kansas City today, and all winter. If you or someone you know is ever in need of help, car crashes are one of our main practice areas and we are happy to answer any questions as part of a free consultation. Contact us at 816.867.8611 to learn more.

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