Almost 10 percent of all motor vehicle accidents are caused by rainy weather, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Summer rain showers are often refreshing and bring relief from the heat. However, the rains also create dangerous driving conditions. More than 1.2 million motor vehicle accidents are in some way caused by wet road conditions and many of these accidents can be attributed to hydroplaning. A Chicago car accident attorney from Willens & Baez can give you legal advice if you have suffered injuries because of a weather-related car accident.
Hydroplaning Car Accidents
Hydroplaning can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle, leading to a serious automobile accident. Every year, thousands of people are injured and even killed in rainy weather. Hydroplaning accidents can occur with just about 1/12 inch of water coverage on the road and the chances of an accident increase when the tires are not properly maintained. The risk of hydroplaning accidents is high during light showers. In such conditions, drivers often underestimate the risk of hydroplaning and do not reduce their speed.
Tips to Avoid Hydroplaning Car Accidents
It is not possible to completely eliminate the risk of rainy weather and hydroplaning accidents, but there are certain safety tips to reduce the risk.
- Drive slowly: The higher the speed of the vehicle, the higher is the risk of a hydroplaning accident.
- Avoid cruise control: Cruise control allows you to maintain a stable speed. However, this may not be a good idea in rainy weather when you may have to quickly reduce your speed to minimize the risk of skidding.
- Maintain adequate distance with other vehicles: It is important that there is enough space between you and another vehicle to avoid a collision in case one of the vehicles starts to hydroplane.
- Avoid roads where water is accumulating: Such areas pose a serious hydroplaning hazard. It is usually hard to navigate water around zones where water is accumulated or puddles are formed.
- Do not apply the brakes suddenly: Rather than braking hard, slowly release your foot off the accelerator.
- Maintain your car properly: Before the rainy season begins, schedule preventive maintenance for your vehicle. Make sure all the lights, wipers, signals, and treads are in good condition.
- Stay calm if you car begins to hydroplane: Do not panic if your car begins to hydroplane; you can make matters worse by making poor decisions. Keep moving in the right direction, slowly decelerate, and slowly apply the brakes.
With these simple tips, you can reduce the risk of a rainy weather or hydroplaning accident. It is important to use these preventive measures even when there are light rain showers. The risk of an accident is high during the first few minutes of a rain shower. In fact, research has shown that the first ten minutes are often the riskiest.
Chicago Car Accident Attorneys
If you have been injured by a negligent driver, contact a Chicago car accident attorney from Willens & Baez to get legal advice.