With today’s heavy snowfall, an Illinois auto accident attorney of ours suggested that we remind our readers of how dangerous winter driving conditions can be, and what they can do to drive more safely. We saw in the Morris Daily Herald an article regarding the Illinois State Police and how they are reminding drivers statewide to use their headlights in winter weather. It can help increase visibility, especially in a situation where it might be difficult to see, and it can also help motorists to see when another vehicle is near by. Both taillights, as well as headlights, are important to have on so drivers can see your car from the front and behind.
We also saw that the Paris Beacon-News wrote an article earlier this afternoon that discussed how the Illinois State Police is encouraging motorists to stay off the road today. When the snow is paired with heavy winds, such as the storm today, it can make it very difficult to see. Some Illinois motorists were even stranded in today’s storm because of visibility issues causing crashes.
The Weather Channel provided some tips from safely driving in snow and ice, however their number one tip is to avoid driving at all. Remember to not go out driving until after the snow plows and salt trucks have done their routes. If you do choose to go out, make sure you’re car is prepared with a full tank of gas, emergency kit, cell phone, snow tires, and full wiper fluid. When driving in winter weather, drive more slowly and cautiously then you normally would. This allows plenty of stopping time, because when the roads are wet there is less friction, which means that it takes longer to stop. Don’t use cruise control, and be especially careful on places like bridges, ramps, and overpasses.
If your wheels do skid, do not accelerate. Steer in the direction that you want to go in, and slowly pump the brakes. Should you get stuck, do not spin your wheels. Turning the wheels from side to side will help get snow out of the way, making it easier for your car to get out by lightly accelerating. Finally, putting a rough substance, such as gravel or pebbles, or even kitty liter in front of the wheels will help to add traction and make it easier for the car to get out.
A Chicago car accident attorney of ours also pointed out that the Illinois Department of Transportation also offers online services for motorists to track the weather online before they drive. Websites like www.Weather.gov as well as www.GettignAroundIllinois.com give the latest road conditions. You can even call IDOT at 1-800-452-4368. Our Chicago auto accident lawyers encourage our recommend staying off the road in these dangerous weather conditions, but should you need to drive, please do so carefully.