Staying Safe When Driving During New England Winters

Law Office of David Dwork

How to Minimize Your Risk of Injury During Ice and Snow

Bostonians and all New Englanders know that winter brings difficult driving conditions. Before you get behind the wheel this winter, review some of the following important safety tips. While some accidents are unavoidable when a negligent driver hits you, it is always better to be prepared for driving in the winter weather.

Winter Driving Tips:

  • Make Sure You Can See. Before you leave your driveway or parking spot, make sure all snow and ice are removed from your vehicle. This includes mirrors, side windows, windshield, rear windshield, and any other surfaces that you might need to look out. Having a complete field of vision is essential to driving at any time of year, and even more important when you need to be avoiding snow and ice.
  • Use Four-Wheel Drive When Necessary. If your car or truck is equipped with four-wheel drive, it can be useful in snowy conditions. Four-wheel drive is not a license to drive without caution, but it can give your vehicle some additional traction. If your car does not automatically revert to four-wheel-drive, be sure to turn it on.
  • Keep Speeds to a Minimum. Every winter, drivers in the greater Boston area witness drivers who drive at excessive speeds during snowy and icy conditions. It is important to remember that the speed limit is an upward limit that is placed on a road as a maximum speed during optimal conditions. It is not a suggested speed, and in wintery conditions, all drivers should be operating at a speed that is far below the posted speed limit, for their own safety and for the safety of others. Driving slower allows you to have more control over your vehicle and more time to react if you see snow or black ice on the road.
  • Obey Driving Bans and Parking Bans. On some rare occasions, a city or town will issue parking bans or driving bans. Follow these instructions. They are designed to protect you and allow snow cleanup crews to make the roads you travel on safer.
  • Be Prepared. During the winter, you should always be aware of the weather report. We all know that it can be sunny and mild in the morning and white-out conditions by the time you leave the office. Make sure you allow yourself enough time to remove ice and snow from your car and drive at a safe speed.

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