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Personal injury lawyer warns icy roads can cause fatal crashes

icyIt’s that time of year again in Northeastern Pennsylvania, and across the country, when icy and snowy road conditions contribute to many accidents, some fatal.

A fatal tractor-trailer crash occurred this past weekend on I-80 in Luzerne County. Pennsylvania state police blamed icy roads for the one-vehicle crash that killed a 43-year-old New York man. There were many more fatalities caused by icy road conditions across the country this weekend. In Minnesota, NBC station KARE reported that six people died in crashes on icy highways. Minnesota state police reported that in just about every accident, it started with a vehicle losing control on the icy roads.

According to the Avalanche Journal, in Texas, the Lubbock police department reported they responded to 103 accidents in a 12-hour period on Sunday, four of them fatal. Heavy snow and sleet contributed to the crashes.

The Weather Channel warned of hazardous driving conditions throughout Texas and Oklahoma and northeast to Ohio. In Oklahoma, the Emergency Medical Services Authority reported paramedics responded to 28 accidents in the Tulsa area as of mid afternoon on Sunday. A fatal truck crash in Utah killed the driver after she lost control of her vehicle on icy roads and was ejected after the truck rolled several times. In Ohio, a man was killed when he lost control of his Dodge Ram and was ejected as the truck overturned multiple times.

The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration reports that 23% of traffic accidents, over 1.3 million a year, are weather-related. On average, 6,250 people are killed and over 480,000 are injured in weather-related crashes each year. Icy roads pose a real threat to drivers across the country. When you factor in snow, sleet, black ice and frigid temperatures, it’s easy to understand why we are entering the most dangerous time of year for drivers. Anywhere the temperature can drop below freezing is at risk for road icing this time of year and through the winter.

Two of the biggest hazards are ice and black ice. Ice forms when the road is wet and the surface temperature drops below freezing. Because the air temperature warms faster than the ground, there may still be ice on the road if the temperature is above freezing. Black ice is a thin layer that forms on roads, but instead of looking icy, the road may appear to be wet. When a driver realizes it is actually ice, it is often too late. Driving on ice and snow can be challenging, but it is possible to be safe and prepared.

Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer gives ten tips for driving in icy conditions:

1. Slow down and adjust your speed for weather conditions.
2. Leave plenty of room between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you, in case you need to stop quickly.
3. Brake gently to avoid skidding.
4. Give yourself extra time to get where you are going.
5. Watch for hazardous sections of the roadway. Bridges, overpasses and shaded spots will often ice up before other areas of the roadway.
6. Turn your lights on to increase your visibility to other motorists.
7. Keep your windshield and car windows clean for better visibility.
8. Don’t cruise. Using cruise control on slippery roads can make it difficult to react quickly.
9. Always wear your seat belt.
10. Stay focused, alert, and free from distractions while driving.

The personal injury lawyers at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys offer free consultations to individuals injured in car and truck accidents. We have helped hundreds of victims get the compensation they deserve for their injuries. If you or a family member have been seriously injured in a car or truck accident, contact the personal injury lawyers at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys today at 855-866-5529.

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