By Pendergast Law on December 14, 2018
Video clips of confused Seattle drivers sliding down icy hills are a popular source of entertainment online. It’s all fun and games until someone gets really hurt.
Seattle faces unique weather challenges, with some winters heavy on snow while other years see no snow at all. But when it does snow in Seattle, the roads freeze overnight and transform the streets into a skating rink for unsuspecting drivers. Seattle has many hills, and we know ice plus hills can equal disaster. During these upcoming holidays, it’s important to stay safe. That’s why we’ve compiled some safety tips on how to survive winter driving in Seattle.
If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Seattle and sustained serious injuries, you might be eligible for compensation. If another driver was at fault for your accident, it’s your right to hold the other driver accountable, weather or not. Contact Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S., at 888-539-9211 to discuss your case for free.
How to Stay Safe on Icy Roads
Winter is a visually stunning season, but snow and ice can create extremely hazardous road conditions. From out-of-control skidding to getting stuck, winter weather can test even the most seasoned driver.
The best thing to do during a winter storm is to wait it out and not get on the road. If you have to get on the road, try leaving your car at home and taking the bus. However, if that’s not an option, here are some safety tips for surviving Seattle’s icy roads:
- Check the weather: Before you head out, check the forecast to get an idea of what the road conditions might be. The more prepared you are, the better.
- Know your route: You will have a much better chance of staying safe if you know where you’re going and are familiar with the roads.
- Put on snow tires or snow chains: If you know that the snow is sticking around, and you’ll be driving a lot, it’s a good idea to invest in either snow tires or chains for better traction.
- Keep your distance: Keep a healthy distance between you and other cars; in case of skidding, you may be able to avoid hitting them or being hit by them.
- Don’t slam on the brakes: Learning how to use your brakes properly is imperative for driving safely in snow. Do not slam on your brakes, as that can send you into a skid. If you’re approaching a stop sign or intersection, take your foot off of the accelerator in order to slow down gradually.
- Go slow: Driving smoothly and slowly, without making any sudden or aggressive movements, helps you keep traction and keep control of your vehicle.
- Have your essentials: Make sure you have a flashlight, blanket, and some non-perishable food items just in case you do get stuck and have to wait it out somewhere on the road.
We offer some additional tips, including for bicyclists and motorcyclists, in our article, Washington Winter Weather Car Accident Attorneys Discuss: How to Drive Safely in Cold Conditions!
What to Do After an Accident
Winter car accidents can be scary and confusing. Despite your best efforts, you still end up involved in an accident. If that’s the case, here are some important things to keep in mind.
- If possible, move: Make sure you are out of the way of oncoming traffic. You don’t want to be involved in another accident. If you can move your car, do so. And get yourself to safety (and warmth) as soon as possible.
- Call 911: Report your accident to the police. Get medical assistance if necessary.
- Take pictures: Having pictures and video of the scene of the accident is a great idea. It can really strengthen your case if you choose to pursue one. Photograph any poor road conditions that contributed to the accident as well as the damage and your injuries.
- Exchange information: Exchange all relevant information with the other party, such as name, phone number, driver’s license, and insurance information.
- Get witness information: If there are any witnesses to your accident, get their information, as they might be able to testify on your behalf.
If the accident happened due to the other party’s negligence or a dangerous Seattle road (road with damaged or covered signs or bad conditions), it’s a good idea to contact an experienced car accident attorney to discuss your case. You deserve compensation for any injuries, medical bills, and time off work. At Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S., we have a great deal of experience dealing with car accidents and getting victims the maximum compensation possible. We dedicate ourselves to our clients, as we know a wreck can leave them emotionally shaken up and physically injured. With medical bills piling up, the stress can make for a difficult recovery. This is where we come in to help. Call us at 888-539-9211 for a free consultation.