Rain Over Holiday Season Increases Risk of Accidents

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One of the things consumers are celebrating this holiday season is the continued low price of filling up our tanks with gasoline. With this continued low price of fuel, it is anticipated that many families will be traveling over Christmas and New Year’s this year. Also, with Christmas falling on a Thursday, many employees likely will be taking Friday, December 26th off. All of this means that there is likely to be substantially more vehicles on Tallahassee roads over the next couple of weeks.

In addition to these extra vehicles creating an increased risk of congestion and accidents, the local weather forecast for the Tallahassee area indicates that “rain could be in the picture just before Christmas.” If the storm stalls out, it could make roadways wet and dangerous for Florida drivers.

Rain Could Affect Holiday Driving Conditions And Lead To Accidents

Bad weather is one of the most common causes of automobile accidents. According to United States Department of Transportation research, nationwide, about twenty-four percent of all motor vehicle accidents are weather-related. These weather-related crashes lead to almost 7,500 deaths and over 673,000 injury victims each year.

Depending on the particular geographic location, weather-related crashes can happen because of rain, fog, or wet pavement. In colder climates, weather-related crashes also can be caused by sleet, snowy/slushy pavement, or icy roads. In addition to precipitation, high winds and temperature extremes can lead to accidents by affecting a driver’s driving capabilities, a vehicle’s performance (such as traction, stability, and maneuverability), pavement friction, and a roadway’s infrastructure.

Rain, in particular, can have an impact on the risk of a car accident occurring and the severity of a crash, if one occurs. For example, several studies that have been done on driver behavior and crashes during rainfall have shown that drivers often do not reduce their speed enough on curved sections of highways when the roadway pavement is wet.

One reason drivers often fail to slow down on wet pavement is because they do not realize that roadway pavement friction is lower on wet pavement as compared to dry pavement. However, in one study of crashes that occurred during and after rainfalls, investigators concluded that a driver’s risk of being involved in a car accident during rainfall is 70 percent higher than a driver’s risk of being involved in a crash under clear, dry conditions. Another study found that on very wet days, crash frequency was twice the rate as on dry days.

Tallahassee Area Car Accident Lawyers

Because of the amount of precipitation our area can receive, weather-related car accidents are common in the Tallahassee and Southern Georgia area. In fact, in the south, nearly 64 percent of all weather-related car crashes happen during rainfall and over 90 percent of these crashes happen on wet pavement.

While drivers cannot be expected to be able to predict the weather, they are expected to use appropriate care when operating their vehicles during inclement weather. If a driver operates his or her vehicle at an excessive speed or otherwise operates the car in an unsafe manner (such as inappropriate lane changes or swerving in or out of traffic), the driver may be held liable for any harm that comes from this dangerous driving. The government also may be held responsible if it failed to properly maintain the roadway where the accident occurred.

To find out more about who may be held liable for your Florida car accident injury costs, contact the experienced Tallahassee area car accident lawyers at Fasig & Brooks at (850) 222-3232 or use our convenient online contact form for prompt, smart legal help.