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3 potential safety risks when driving in winter

On Behalf of | Nov 15, 2021 | Personal Injury

When operating on the roads in South Dakota, there are always potential hazards to drivers. However, as winter approaches, further challenges become apparent.

In winter, temperatures are generally colder and temperatures may even reach extremely low levels. This presents a number of dangers to road users, including decreased traction on the roads and impaired visibility. Outlined below are three potential safety risks when driving in winter.

Lack of traction on road surfaces

In colder temperatures, there is always a potential for drivers to lose traction. This may be accentuated if brakes are applied too heavily or if the accelerator is not used sparingly. Both situations can result in a complete loss of traction in the tires, which greatly increases the chances of a road traffic accident.

Impaired visibility

Maximizing visibility during wintertime is extremely important. Visibility can be affected in a number of ways. For example, drivers may struggle to see other vehicles when they are approaching and snow is falling. In turn, other drivers are less likely to see you in such conditions. One useful way to ensure visibility is to use headlights, signals and high beams effectively. Being as visible as possible greatly reduces the chances of a collision throughout the winter.

Black ice

Black ice is particularly dangerous to road users because of its complete transparency. If you have encountered black ice, it is important to stay calm and not apply the brakes or accelerator in a careless manner. Common hotspots for black ice include bridges and overpasses, which is always worth keeping in mind.

Recognizing some of the key hazards of winter driving could ensure your safety. If you have been injured in a road traffic accident, there may be legal options available to you.