Tips to Prevent New York Car Accidents in Bad Weather
Some of the country is already experiencing inclement weather, and winter has not even officially hit yet. Torrential rain and high winds have battered parts of the East Coast. Severe weather can be a major factor in causing car accidents throughout the United States. Poor visibility due to rain, fog, wind gusts, hail, and snow can greatly impair a motorist’s ability to drive safely. According to the Federal Highway Administration (FHA), more than 7,000 people die in weather-related collisions each year in the United States. That is why it is imperative for everyone who drives in good or bad weather to operate their vehicles in a safe manner in order to avoid collisions and serious injuries or fatalities.
Safe Driving Techniques
Storms can wreak havoc on commutes and pose serious danger to motorists on the road. One of the most important things to remember is a driver’s braking or stopping distance on wet or icy pavement is increased compared to traveling on dry roads. However, there are certain precautions a driver can take to reduce the risk of an auto accident in bad weather. Some of these safety measures include:
- Reduce speed.
- Increase the distance between one’s vehicle and the vehicle in front.
- Turn on headlights to enhance a car’s visibility.
- Avoid abrupt turns or sudden stops.
- Use caution and be alert at intersections or when changing lanes and merging.
- Learn how to regain control of a car that starts hydroplaning or skidding.
- Understand one’s driving limitations to avoid driver fatigue.
- Make sure a car is in proper working condition.
- Know how to use a car’s technology for navigation and alerts for route changes or hazardous weather conditions.
What Is Comparative Negligence?
New York is a no-fault car insurance state. This means that after a car accident, a driver typically must file a claim under his or her own auto insurance coverage to receive compensation for medical costs or lost wages, regardless of whether he or she caused the collision. However, if the injury meets certain qualifications, a person may file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
If the other motorist was completely at fault for the accident, that other driver may be required to provide compensation for damages. However, if both parties are to blame for the crash, New York follows a “pure comparative fault” rule. Under this rule, the court calculates a couple factors based on the evidence from the scene of the accident: the total dollar amount of the victim’s damages, and the percentage of fault each party bears. The plaintiff’s award is reduced by a percentage depending on his or her blame.
In order to pursue a personal injury claim against the driver who caused an auto accident, the injuries suffered must qualify as “serious” under the state’s parameters. Examples of these types of injuries include:
- Broken bones or fractures
- Permanent limitation of use of a bodily organ
- Serious limitation of a bodily function or system
- Full disability for 90 days
Even if a person drives responsibly, he or she may still be at risk for an accident and injuries due to another motorist’s reckless or negligent actions. Therefore, it is important to discuss any case with an attorney to ensure compensation is awarded appropriately.
Contact a New York City Car Accident Lawyer
Vehicle crashes may occur due to hazardous driving conditions, often caused by rainy or snowy weather. If you or someone you know was hurt in an automobile accident, you may be entitled to seek damages to help cover medical costs and lost wages. For more than 50 years, Goldberg Sager & Associates have handled many types of accidents, and we will aggressively represent you to ensure that you receive the compensation you need and deserve. Our dedicated Brooklyn, NY personal injury attorneys will thoroughly examine the circumstances that led to your collision, determine liability, and work to hold the negligent driver responsible. Call our office today at 718-514-9516 to schedule a free consultation.