4 Bad Winter Driving Habits To Break

winter driving tipsWinter weather continues to contribute to motor vehicle accidents in the news as of late, so I thought now would be as good a time as any to address this ever-tragic topic. The real tragedy is drivers who haven’t formed safe driving habits to include inclement weather conditions which can place them at fault in an accident, potentially leading to liability for damages or injuries. Unsafe driving in wintry weather can also impact your ability to recover for your own damages. Of all the posts I’ve done on dangerous winter driving habits, here are four of the most common bad habits to make sure you break.

1. Following too closely.

The old rule-of-thumb holds true – for optimal weather conditions – one car length for every ten miles an hour of speed. But when roads are snowy, icy, or even just wet, you need to drastically increase your following distance – even more at night. Failing to do so will simply not give you enough time or distance to stop, causing a rear-end collision.

2. Speeding.

Too many drivers forget that posted speeds are for ideal driving conditions. That’s why many states have, in addition to the posted speed limits, a basic speed law that prohibits motorists from traveling faster than road conditions allow. This means that even when you are driving under the posted speed limit, you may still be at fault for driving with excessive speed if your speed was unsafe given the weather and road conditions.

3. Driving with an obstructed windshield and headlights.

When conditions make visibility difficult, you are still responsible for clearing ice, snow, mud, or other obstructions from your windshield, headlights, and tail lights. It’s best to get into the habit of scraping icy windshields before getting into your car. In fact, you should carry in your trunk a winter driving safety kit. Finally, replace your windshield wipers as soon as they begin wearing out to make sure you can always see where you’re going.

4. Not using snow tires or chains.

In addition to seasonal snow tires, you should be sure to carry a set of chains. In some states, chains may be required for certain roadways during weather events for vehicles without four-wheel drive or snow tires.

Just a few simple precautions can keep everyone around you as safe as possible this winter season. But if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident through no fault of your own in New Mexico, be sure to contact the Atkinson Law Firm in Albuquerque for your free consultation.

Additional resources:

Winter Weather Safety Tips
Winter Driving Safety Tips

Scott Atkinson (264 Posts)

Scott concentrates on serious personal injury cases. He believes that a catastrophic injury does not just affect the victim; it also dramatically impacts the victim’s family. Scott is in Albuquerque to fight for you to recover your New Mexico accident losses!