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5 Tips for Preventing a Winter-Related Auto Accident in Denver

Mark A. Simon Oct. 9, 2015

Winter in Denver can certainly result in icy, slushy, or snowy roads that make driving difficult. In 2014, 104 cars were involved in a pile-up on I-25 during a heavy snow storm, according to The Denver Post. Avoiding involvement in an accident like that takes a little skill and know-how. So when the weather turns wintery, stay safe on the roads by remembering these tips for preventing an accident:

  • Keep your windshield clear. Before you get on the road, make sure your windshield is defrosted and cleared of ice and snow. And while you’re at it, clear any ice or snow from your lights as well. Keep your windshield washer fluid topped off and even consider traveling with an extra gallon or two if you’ll be driving in winter conditions for long distances and washing your windshield a lot.

  • Don’t tailgate. Even in the best of conditions, driving too close to the car in front of you increases the chances of a rear-end accident should that car suddenly have to brake. Throw icy roads into the mix and braking can lead to skidding—right into the back of the car in front of you. Always keep a safe distance, and even increase that distance when the road conditions are bad.

  • Skid safely. Despite being careful, a skid can easily happen in winter weather, especially if black ice is present. If you feel your car skid, take your foot off the accelerator and turn the wheel in the direction you want to go. In cars with anti-lock brakes, steadily apply pressure on the brakes. In cars without anti-lock brakes, pump the brakes gently instead.

  • Look out for black ice. Black ice forms when precipitation is falling and the ground temperature causes it to freeze on impact, or when snow or water refreezes. It’s especially prevalent under overpasses, on bridges, and in shady areas of roads. If you can’t see the ice, it doesn’t mean it’s not there, so slow down and drive accordingly when you encounter these areas of the roads or highways.

  • Use four-wheel drive. If you have it, use it. Four-wheel drive allows all four wheels of a car to drive a vehicle, which comes in handy in winter weather. However, four-wheel drive can also make a driver feel overly confident. Just because it helps you drive better in the snow does not mean it’ll prevent you from skidding on ice. Drive as you would without it, adhering to speed limits, watching for ice, and looking out for other drivers around you.

Even if you’re a safe driver, you may still experience a winter-related auto accident and need a Denver auto accident attorney. Local attorney Mark A. Simon specializes in navigating car accident claims and getting you the compensation you deserve. Call us for advice