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TX car accident lawyerA large portion of Texas enjoys fairly warm weather for most of the year, but winter temperatures sometimes do happen, even as far south as Houston or San Antonio. In early February 2020, snow flurries have led to fun and memories - but have also led to icy roads and crashes. In Austin, parts of North Loop 360 and East U.S. 290 were closed, and in Round Rock, RM 1431 saw two crashes recently. While law enforcement and the Texas Department of Transportation were able to manage the majority of issues on the roads, this is by no means guaranteed. If you are in an auto accident where the weather could have played a role, it is a good idea to understand what options you might have for compensation.

What People Do In Weather

The U.S. Federal Highway Administration’s Road Weather Management Program (RWMP) estimates that as many as 21 percent of all auto accidents are weather-related, whether rain, sleet, fog, snow, wind, or another type. On average, almost 5,000 fatalities happen every year as a result of these crashes - because of weather, obviously, but more specifically because of certain factors in driving due to weather; namely, how individual drivers approach unusual or sudden weather patterns.

For example, heavy snowfall can reduce the rate of speed on a freeway by as much as 40 percent - but there will always be some driver who continues to drive, often aggressively, at a rate of speed that would be fine on smooth, dry roads, but is too fast when ice or rain is present. Auto accident cases often turn on the “reasonableness” (or lack thereof) of someone’s actions, and if it can be shown that the driver’s speed plus the weather was unreasonable, they will often wind up being liable for any injuries they caused.

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Posted on in Car Wrecks

Texas accident attorney, Texas personal injury lawyerThe winter storms will soon be arriving, even in Texas. In past winters, northern Texas has seen the thermometer drop in  the single digits and in south Texas, the temperatures can drop into the thirties, cold enough for snow and ice. Although these cold temperatures bring a beautiful snowy backdrop to the holiday season, they also bring dangerous road conditions and auto accidents.

Drivers are used to the warm, dry roads, especially in Texas, so when the snow hits, it is especially important to take extra precautions. Auto safety advocates suggest the following tips:

  • Avoid driving: If you can help it, stay off the roads until the conditions have improved. Avoiding dangerous roads means avoiding car accidents.
  • Pay attention to the weather: Check the daily forecast before you head out so you will be expecting snow showers or any other changes in weather before they occur. You may even be able to plan your day accordingly so that you will be off the roads before the snow hits.
  • Wear your seatbelt: Seatbelts should be worn even in the best driving conditions, but it is extra important in bad weather, with the chance of crashing is heightened.
  • Slow down: When you are driving in winter weather, ease off the gas pedal. It is much easier to lose control of your vehicle at high speeds on snowy roads. Do not depend on your tires’ traction or anti-lock brakes to save you from an accident, even the best eyes can miss a patch of ice on the road ahead.
  • Do not stop for accidents or stranded cars: Usually, trying to stop and pull over on an icy road will cause more problems than the one you are trying to stop for. If you see someone that needs help, contact 911 and a professional can come and assist the driver in need.
  • Brake slowly: If you do not have ABS (anti-lock brakes), act in their place by tapping your brake when you are trying to stop on a slippery surface. Holding your brakes down may only lock them and will cause you to slide. If you do have ABS, you should still be prepared to slide in bad conditions.
  • Turning into a slide: When your car begins to slide on the road, turn your wheel in the direction that you want your car to go. It is likely that you may overcorrect your turn and you will have to quickly turn your wheel the opposite way, but you will then have slowed down your sliding and turning vehicle.

If you have been injured in an auto accident on the icy roads, contact an experienced New Braunfels accident attorney for assistance. Call The Bettersworth Law Firm at 830-606-0404 today.

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The sooner you call, the sooner we can build your case, secure evidence and get maximum compensation for your injuries.

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