7 Tips to Stay Safe on Texas Roads this Winter

7 Tips to Stay Safe on Texas Roads this Winter

By Dallas Car Accident Attorney,  Tim O’Hare

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The mercury is rising and temps will be back in the 60s this weekend, but after the recent blast of arctic weather and precipitation that shut down schools around the state, now’s a good time for a refresher on winter driving safety.

Due to our typically warm weather, Texas drivers don’t get much practice driving on slick roads, but winter weather can make driving conditions both unpredictable and dangerous. When freezing temps along with precipitation hit, the Texas Department of Transportation recommends watching for potential hazardous road conditions, such as:

  • Loss of pavement friction due to wet, snow-covered or icy conditions
  • Restricted visibility due to fog, falling rain or vehicle spray
  • Lane obstruction due to standing water or plowed or blowing snow
  • Infrastructure damage (such as a washed-out road)

If you must get out on snow-covered or icy roads next time Old Man Winter pays a visit to Texas, follow these safety tips:

  • Slow down. Keep in mind that speed limits are set based on normal road conditions. Winter weather makes the road conditions unpredictable so give yourself some extra time.
  • Increase distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. On ice or snow, TxDOT recommends maintaining a following distance at least three times the normal following distance.
  • Stay back at least 200 feet from snow removal equipment.
  • Avoid sharp turns or sudden braking. If you start to slide, gently ease off the gas pedal or brakes and turn your steering wheel in the direction of the skid until you regain control.
  • Use extra caution on bridges, ramps, overpasses, and shaded areas.
  • If stopped, accelerate slowly to get better traction.
  • If you find yourself stuck in snow or ice, placing sand, kitty litter or cardboard on the ground in front of your tires can help you regain traction.

If you are involved in an accident during winter weather, follow the same protocol: turn off your car engine and turn on hazard lights; do not leave the scene of the accident; call 9-1-1; exchange information; photograph and document the accident; and ask the police to file an accident report.

If you have been seriously injured or lost a family member in a car accident, contact The Law Offices of Tim O’Hare to speak with a Dallas personal injury attorney.

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