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It’s that time of year again: Prepare for weather-related hazards

Most Atlanta residents won’t soon forget last year’s snow and freezing rain conditions, which caused many drivers to become stranded on roads and multiple injuries due to sliding and crashing on the ice. With the winter season nearly upon us once more, the attorneys at Butler Wooten Cheeley & Peak LLP are prepared to see more personal injury cases involving weather-related car accidents.

Fall and winter weather cause great concern for drivers across the country. The Federal Highway Administration estimates that 23 percent of all motor vehicle accidents are caused by adverse weather conditions. Snow, slush and ice are especially dangerous when combined with heavy freeway traffic – a common scenario in Georgia. These conditions often result in serious multi-vehicle accidents.

According to Esurance, black ice causes a particularly hazardous road condition, because it most often forms on roads late at night when visibility is diminished and looks like wet pavement rather than ice. However, a sheet of black ice is extremely slick and catches many drivers off guard. In the late fall and throughout the winter, shady patches, bridges and overpasses are especially dangerous spots because ice tends to form in these areas before it forms on the rest of the road.

You may protect yourself from hydroplaning in the rain, sliding on ice or skidding in slush by driving slower than the speed limit in poor weather. Additionally, it is always a good idea to give other drivers extra space, and avoid slamming on your brakes, which can cause the wheels to lock up and skid.

Practicing safe driving behaviors may reduce your chances of getting in a weather-related car accident, but doesn’t necessarily protect you against other drivers. Learn more about the risks you face from negligent and reckless drivers by visiting our page on car accidents.

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