In the U.S., more than 70% of the nation’s roads are situated in regions that are exposed to snow, and around 70% of the country’s population is living in these snow regions. Those roads are receiving an average of 5 inches or 13 cm of snowfall every year.
Due to the presence of ice and snow, pavement friction and vehicle maneuverability are reduced and results in decreased roadway capacity, slower speeds, and increased crash risk. Statistics have shown that every year, 24% of road accidents happen because of snowy, icy, or slushy pavement, and 15% occur due to storm or snowfall.
Each year, vehicle crashes due to snowy or icy roadways kill around 1,300 people and injure more than 116,800. The problems with snow and ice do not end here since road maintenance costs have also increased because of the weather.
The budget for road maintenance during winter rises to 20%, and that means the state and different local agencies are spending more than $2.3 billion for snow-related operations. Snow removal services in Salt Lake City help lower the risk of accidents and injuries by clearing snow and ice off the roads during the winter.
Winter weather can be hazardous, and the number of fatalities will increase if people refuse to do their part. Since road accidents are common in the midst of snow and ice, everyone should be extra cautious while on the road.
It’s also essential that drivers and commuters know the most common reasons for road accidents so they can avoid these mistakes and stay safe under the harsh weather.
1. You are driving too fast for the weather
This is one of the top reasons why road accidents happen even under beautiful weather. When you can see that the road is slick or your visibility was reduced due to the snow and ice, you need to be extra cautious with your speed and drive slowly.
As much as possible, drive below the recommended speed limit to be safe.
2. Your windows are blocked
Winter can store snow, ice, and sleet in your vehicle’s windows, which can result in lower visibility of your road. To avoid any incidents because of this situation, you need to clear your windows to improve visibility. Use the defroster of your car so you can keep your windows and windshield clear while taking the road.
3. Rushing to reach your destination
You need to take some time to reach your destination if you are driving under harsh weather conditions during the winter. Avoid the rush because it can only increase your risk of being in road accidents.
4. Getting too close to other vehicles
Vehicles need to have enough space when they are driving in a snowy or icy road since getting a complete stop will take some time and space. If you are on the way during the winter weather, give your vehicle more distance from the other cars to reduce the chances of a rear-end crash or collision.
5. Staying on the lane with a broken or troubled vehicle
You should never stop or stay in a lane under the harsh winter weather since it can be a cause of road accidents. Whether your car has trouble or you cannot see the road, always stay out of the lane and stay safe on the side of the way.
Since road visibility is reduced due to ice and snow, other drivers may not see your vehicles as they pass your lane.
6. Traveling for no critical reason
When the weather is harsh, the most recommended thing to do is stay at home if you have no critical concern outdoors. If you have minor trips, it is best to reschedule it during better weather. As much as possible, stay in the comfort of your home and the warmth of your family.
Protect yourself and your family from the different road accidents that are happening during winter weather.