Car Crash: Weather Related Car Accidents
Weather, or more specifically, bad weather, is responsible for about 23 percent of all car accidents in the US, equaling about 1.3 million accidents resulting in 7,000 fatalities annually. Federal highway safety agencies have identified some of the main causes of these types of accidents:
- Wet or slippery pavement accounts for nearly 908,000 accidents per year or about 73 percent of weather-related crashes
- About 573,000 accidents are attributed to rain or 43 percent of weather-related incidents
- Around 17 percent of such crashes are caused by sleet or snow
- Snow on pavement causes about 14 percent of accidents from bad conditions
- Cold conditions after a snowfall or a thaw followed by freezing weather create hazards such as “black ice,” which is difficult to see. About 14 percent of these types of crashes are caused by this condition
- Fog can greatly reduce visibility quickly, and is often implicated in rear-end car accidents
Motorists have a duty to exercise ordinary care to other motorists, their passengers, pedestrians and anyone else on the roadway, regardless of the weather or traffic. This means drivers are to obey the traffic laws, not speed, not text or use a cell phone and keep a proper lookout for hazards on the road.
This duty to exercise ordinary care is defined as what a reasonably cautious person would do under similar circumstances. It also means that in snowy, wet or foggy weather that you drive according to the traffic conditions. If the speed limit, for instance, is 65 miles per hour but fog, snow or rain limits visibility or makes the roadways slippery; ordinary caution requires that you drive carefully and below the speed limit. Most states also have traffic laws that permit patrol officers to ticket you for unsafe speed if the traffic or weather is such that driving at or near the posted speed limit is unsafe.
It’s important to talk to your attorney promptly if you’ve been hit in bad weather by a negligent driver because insurance adjusters for the negligent driver will often try to place responsibility on other factors or claim their clients drove carefully, but that weather conditions were unavoidably to blame.
Your lawyer can, for example, obtain weather reports for the day and time of your accident to confirm what conditions existed at the moment of the collision. Keep in mind that if multiple vehicles were involved, it might take some investigating to determine which cars were at fault and which impact caused your injuries.
You can collect damages for your injuries and losses if you prove that the responsible motorist violated a traffic law or was otherwise negligent in how he/she operated the vehicle under adverse weather conditions. Depending on the nature and extent of your injuries, your damages may include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future wage losses
- Lost earning capacity
- Diminished quality of life
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Spousal claim for loss of consortium
Your attorney will help you determine the facts and circumstances of your accident, the damages you sustained and your avenues to compensation.
Have You Been Injured in a Weather-related Crash? Call Us Today!
If you’ve been injured in a car accident or lost a loved one in a fatal crash, you need a dedicated team of attorneys and legal professionals fighting for your rights. Our attorneys have a long and proven record of helping the victims of car accidents get the compensation they deserve.
Call us today if you or a loved one were injured in
- Commercial bus crashes
- School bus accidents
- Pedestrian/motor vehicle collisions
- Bicycle accidents
- Truck crashes
- Motorcycle collisions
- Commercial vehicle accidents
- Semi-truck crashes
We’ll fight insurance companies, negligent operators, and reckless drivers to get you the maximum compensation you deserve.