First Winter Blast Of 2012 Causes Dozens Of Wrecks

January 6th, 2012

Winter driving accident2012 literally started off with a bang–dozens of North Carolina car accidents. Until this cold snap, we had been spoiled with above average temperatures until the New Year freeze reminded us it really is winter. From 5pm Monday, January 2, 2012, through 5pm Tuesday, January 3, 2012, North Carolina Highway Patrol answered 267 calls for help in the counties of Yancey, Transylvania, Swain, Rutherford, Polk, Mitchell, McDowell, Madison, Macon, Jackson, Henderson, Haywood, Graham, Clay, Cherokee, Buncombe, and Avery.

The Charlotte car accident lawyers at Auger & Auger wish to remind you to exercise caution when driving in winter conditions. The most frequent cause of weather related accidents is driving too fast for conditions. In Charlotte, black ice is a particular problems on freezing mornings. With that in mind, we would like to share these safe driving tips:

Prepare Your Vehicle:
-Assess tires for excessive wear
-Check battery levels
-Check level of antifreeze
-Equip vehicle with spare tire, lug wrench, and jack
-Keep a shovel/ice scraper
-Jumper cables
-Bag of salt or kitty litter for traction if stuck in ice
-Blanket, water bottle, non perishable snack bars
-Flashlight with spare batteries
-Extra windshield washer fluid

Adjust Your Driving For Conditions:
-Slow down
-Put your lights on
-Increase distance between yourself and next car
-Apply brakes gently so you don’t skid; if you begin to skid, ease off brake
-Clean windshield as often as necessary
-Remember that bridges/overpasses will freeze before a more heavily traveled road
-Four wheel drive and front-wheel drive vehicles are not immune from trouble in winter conditions

Characterization of Winter Weather Advisories:
Winter Storm Warning: means a confirmed storm that will likely bring severe wind chill and snow or heavy precipitation
Winter Storm Watch: nearly 50% chance that winter storm will hit your area
Winter Weather Advisory: hazardous conditions are expected, such as snow and ice, and extreme caution is urged for any travel
Wind Chill Warning: high frostbite risk and expected wind chills of -25F and lower
Wind Chill Watch: chance for wind chill dipping below -25F
Heavy Snow Warning: anticipation of more than 7 inches of snow

Here in North Carolina, we are bombarded with endless newscasts predicting when and where the first flake will fall. Heed the warnings, and if possible, avoid driving or give yourself more time to get where you are going. Stay safe.