Car Accidents Caused by Adverse Weather Conditions
Over the last few years, Florida has been rocked by a series of deviating hurricanes, floods, and storms, all of which resulted in serious, and often deadly, car accidents for those who were unlucky enough to be caught on the road. These types of hazardous weather conditions should always be taken into account when operating a vehicle in Florida, as failing to do so can have disastrous consequences. For instance, it is much more likely that a person who operates a vehicle at highway speeds in high winds and while the roads are still wet will lose control of his or her vehicle, hydroplane, and even collide with another car. Large puddles of water that collect in low lying areas can also be extremely dangerous for drivers, who are encouraged to use extra care and exercise caution when driving in poor weather.
Ideally, the best option for Florida residents after a storm hits is to stay off of the road. However, this is not always possible and when drivers fail to use special care at these times, the results can be devastating. Adverse weather conditions can make it more difficult to determine who was at fault for an accident, so if you were injured while driving during or immediately after a storm, it is important to contact an experienced Fort Lauderdale auto accident lawyer who can help you hold the at-fault parties accountable.
Common Causes of Bad-Weather Accidents
Negligent or inattentive driving, when combined with adverse weather conditions, creates the perfect recipe for serious car crashes. In Florida, the most common causes of accidents that occur in bad weather include:
- Distracted driving;
- Driving too fast for the conditions;
- Driving with bald tires or with tires that have low pressure;
- Speeding in low-lying areas; and
- Poor visibility exacerbated by a failure to use headlights or using damaged windshield wipers.
While always dangerous, these actions are particularly perilous when adverse weather conditions are involved. Fortunately, those who are injured in accidents caused by negligent drivers, even when poor weather contributed to the collision, can hold the at-fault parties accountable if they can prove that:
- The other driver breached his or her duty to act reasonably under the circumstances; and
- The other driver’s breach caused the plaintiff to suffer an injury.
Car accident victims who can meet this burden are eligible to recover damages compensating them for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, property damage, and emotional distress.
Tips for Driving Safely in Adverse Weather
To ensure that you don’t cause an accident as a result of negligent driving during a storm, you should keep the following tips in mind when operating a vehicle in adverse weather conditions:
- Keeping your eyes on the road at all times;
- Refraining from using your phone or participating in other distracting activities;
- Driving slowly to prevent hydroplaning;
- Using your hazard lights;
- Ensuring that your headlights are turned on;
- Avoiding debris on the roads, such as branches;
- Obeying right-of-way laws if traffic signals are down; and
- Pulling off to the side of the road.
While these methods do not guarantee that a person will not be involved in a bad-weather accident, they can go a long way towards preventing injury.
Call Our Office Today for a Free Consultation
If you were injured in a bad-weather accident, please call 954-566-9919 today to speak with one of the dedicated auto accident lawyers at Boone & Davis about your legal options.