Winter is known to be a time of unusual beauty, but that beauty has an ice-cold bite to it. Powerful winds at low temperatures can feel like knives. Add freezing rain to that, and suddenly we have life-threatening conditions. This blog will explain how to stay safe when driving in these conditions. You should always try to stay indoors during a winter weather event. But if you couldn’t avoid leaving the house and you encountered some danger or difficulty while driving, please be sure to call an Essex County car accident lawyer right away. We’ve worked with auto accident cases in a myriad of conditions and we will know how to get you the best result possible.
Look Out for Dangerous Winter Conditions
“Nor’easter” is the name for storms along the east coast of the United States, emerging from a low-pressure system rotating counterclockwise and a high-pressure system rotating clockwise. These can be as dangerous and damaging as hurricanes.
This is partially because nor’easters move more slowly than hurricanes in New Jersey. As the nor’easter lingers in its gradual passage its effect may be concentrated in an area. Slow-moving nor’easters have subjected New Jersey to some of the most expensive and widely destructive events in state history.
These are some extreme weather events you may see in New Jersey:
Blizzards are storms characterized by snowfall and winds over 35 mph, reducing visibility to less than a ¼ mile during a period of three hours or more. Events like blizzards can powerfully isolate a region by halting all vehicle-based activities, stranding visitors, and halting the arrival and departure of supplies and merchandise. Accumulated snow can overburden and destroy roofs, trees, and power lines.
Perilously Low Temperatures
It shouldn’t be a surprise that cold weather in winter can be dangerous, but there are a surprising number of ways low temperatures can affect you. Wind chill can seep away your body heat, leading to hypothermia and frostbite. Hypothermia refers to abnormally low body temperature, at which point the human body starts having difficulties moving or even thinking. Frostbite, on the other hand, means injuries caused when skin and underlying tissue freezes. Both very young and very elderly people are particularly at risk for these conditions.
Be Cautious of Icy Roads
Just like snow, ice can bring down utility poles and trees, thereby cutting off a region’s communications and power. Bridges become especially dangerous in this kind of weather, as these will freeze before other kinds of surfaces.
What Steps Should I Take to Stay Safe Driving During the Winter?
First of all, you should winterize your car by having a mechanic fully check it out, focusing on important functions like the battery, the windshields, and the antifreeze. Snow tires or chains aren’t a necessity but can be extraordinarily helpful.
Similarly, common sense safe driving can save your life. Wear your seatbelt, and drive slowly whenever you’re on snow and ice. Keep your reduced visibility in mind as you make adjustments to the position of your car, so that you aren’t surprised by an unseen hazard on the road. When you move slowly on the road, you’ll have more time to see and react to dangers.