As a resident of the state of Florida, you’re well aware that weather conditions can (and will) change without notice. One minute it’s sunny, but the next a thunderstorm has taken over the area.
If you find yourself behind the wheel when the weather takes a turn for the worse, there are several steps you can take to enhance your safety.
1. Understand the Conditions
A full understanding of what you’re up against is critical to maintaining your safety. Are you dealing with light rain? A heavy thunderstorm? Strong winds? Hail?
You get the point. Conditions can vary greatly, with each one requiring a different response as a driver.
2. Slow Down
This is one of the best steps you can take when driving in inclement weather. If you drive too fast in rain, strong winds, or fog, you increase the risk of an accident.
Imagine a situation in which you’re navigating heavy rain with low visibility. With this, you’re barely able to see the road ahead, which includes standing water. The faster you drive through standing water the greater chance there is of hydroplaning and losing control of your vehicle.
Slow down until conditions improve. Doing so will keep you safe and give you confidence that you’ll reach your destination without incident.
3. Turn on Your Headlights and Hazard Lights
You’re not the only person on the road. You need to think about everyone else just as much as yourself. Neglecting to do so puts every driver (and their passengers) a risk.
By turning on your headlights and hazard lights, you make it easier for other drivers to see your vehicle. And that’s important from a safety perspective.
Also, your headlights will improve visibility, which is exactly what you need in rainy or foggy conditions.
Get into the habit of flipping on your headlights the second inclement weather strikes. And if you need to drive extremely slow, turn on your hazard lights to alert others.
4. Beware of Reckless Drivers
Just because you’re concerned about driving safely in inclement weather doesn’t mean every other driver will take the same approach. In fact, you can expect some drivers to continue operating their vehicle as if conditions are perfect.
It’s a challenging task, but you must pay close attention to other drivers while operating your vehicle and navigating roadway hazards.
For example, move into the right lane on the highway so that anyone who is still driving the speed limit (or faster) has ample room to pass.
5. Move to Safety
Even if you’re in a hurry to reach your destination, it may be best to pull to safety and wait for conditions to improve. Remember, it’s better to be safe than sorry as a driver.
If possible, it’s best to pull into a parking lot. This allows you to wait safely without any fears of passing traffic striking your vehicle.
If a parking lot isn’t an option, move as far away from the road as possible and turn on your hazard lights.
What to do After an Accident
Even though you do your best to avoid an accident, trouble could still find you. And if it does, you must know which steps to take. Here’s a basic overview of what to do after an accident:
- Stay in your vehicle (especially if the weather is bad)
- Examine yourself and passengers for injuries
- Call 911
- Receive medical attention
- Collect evidence related to the accident
Once you’re on the mend and time allows, file an insurance claim. This is also a good time to consult with a personal injury attorney.
Were you or a loved one recently injured in a Florida motor vehicle accident? If so, you must protect your legal rights. Depending on the circumstances, you may be in line to receive compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and more
For legal assistance, contact Zimmet & Zimmet online or via phone at 386-210-3720. Our entire team is available to see your claim through from start to finish.