As fall comes to a close and the weather gets colder, driving conditions
in and around Marietta may become more precarious. Each year, countless
Georgia drivers wreck their vehicles when rain, sleet, snow, and ice are
present on roadways. In the past, we have provided a
winter driving safety tips, but wanted to reiterate those again as metro-Atlanta weather gets colder
One of the simplest and most effective winter driving tip is to look in
the direction that you want to steer your vehicle at all times. In the
event of an accident ahead of you, try to avoid watching it and instead
concentrate on a safe place for your vehicle to be. Typically, a vehicle's
steering wheel follows the driver's eyes because that is what our
reflexes want to do.
Unfortunately, black ice and slick roadways cannot be overcome simply by
looking in a specific direction. The largest issue with black ice is that
it is nearly impossible for drivers to see, which often times causes overreaction.
When a vehicle hits black ice, steering control becomes minimal. Instead
of attempting to turn your steering wheel to regain control, it is better
to continue driving straight and let up on the acceleration. This allows
the vehicle's tires to be pointing straight once the automobile is
off the ice, instead of to the side.
Another winter driving obstacle is that of wet or icy hills and inclines
in roadways. If your vehicle is not equipped with four-wheel drive or
some other sort of assistance system, it is best to wait at the bottom
of the incline or hill until it has been cleared. If there is simply no
way around a hill, it may be possible to use momentum to climb it, but
this can lead to loss of vehicle control.
Perhaps the most difficult lesson to learn is how to appropriately handle
a vehicle once it is already spinning. The proper method of handling spins
may seem counterintuitive, but it is the only way to do so. When a vehicle's
rear begins sliding, the driver should steer into the turn until they
have regained control of the automobile. Once control is recovered, the
driver can continue on whatever path they were previously attempting.
This means if you are trying to make a right turn, but your vehicle begins
spinning to the left, you should steer to the left so that the vehicle
is straightened out and traction is regained.
Fortunately, vehicles continue to be improved with technologies that make
winter driving easier and safer. Many automobiles now have features that
warn drivers when they are hydroplaning or sliding, as well as automatically
respond for the driver. While these technologies may not always be relied
upon, it is helpful to have them nonetheless.
Drivers that cause
automobile accidents, even when winter weather conditions are involved, can be held liable
for injuries to other vehicle passengers and drivers. For this reason,
it is important to travel at appropriate speeds and leave plenty of space
between your vehicle and others on Georgia roadways. For more information
or a free consultation following a Georgia auto accident, contact our
office today at (770) 427-5498.