Spring Weather Driving Hazards
Winter is officially over and it’s time to start thinking about all the fun things that come along with warmer weather. But just because we’re starting to move away from the cold winter months, that doesn’t necessarily mean there aren’t driving hazards are going away. Every time a season changes, a new set of driving hazards to watch out for comes along. Now that spring has arrived, here are some of the most common driving hazards to watch out for.
As the weather warms up, Michigan drivers need to be on high alert for potholes. Potholes form as water seeps into pavement then freezes during freeze/thaw cycles, and after a particularly rough winter, roadways can be in very rough shape. While many potholes are small, others can be large enough to literally make headlines, such the as one from 2018 that was large enough for a police officer to stand in, or the pothole in Hamtramck that was so big a car got stuck in it.
Hitting a large pothole can be very damaging to cars, but they can also cause people to lose control of their vehicles. Keep a close eye out for them as you drive along, but be particularly cautious on days when the roads are wet. Water on the road often makes it hard to see potholes or judge how large they are. If you see a large pothole in the road and want to avoid hitting it, make sure you won’t be hitting anyone in the neighboring lane before you try to go around it.
More Cyclists and Pedestrians
Now that the weather is starting to warm up and the days are getting longer again, people are getting eager to start spending more time outside. This means more people will be out and about walking, jogging, riding their bikes, or taking their motorcycles out for a spin. As you drive, be extra careful to keep an eye out for them. Many drivers tend to become less vigilant about watching for pedestrians and cyclists during the winter months.
Humans aren’t the only ones who become more active as the weather warms up. Spring is mating season for some types of animals and others may be coming out of hibernation so it’s more likely that you’ll encounter animals in areas close to roadways. Deer in particular tend to be most active around dawn and dusk.
Springtime weather can be very unpredictable at times, so it’s always a good idea to check the forecast before leaving the house. As many Michigan residents know very well, just because winter is technically over, that doesn’t necessarily mean we’ve seen the last of winter weather. Snow is still a possibility and since temperatures often drop below freezing at night, icy patches can still turn up on roadways. We also usually get a lot of rain during the spring, which can make roads slippery or cause flooding. According to AAA, approximately 1.2 million car crashes are related to wet pavement every year, so if it starts raining while you drive, slow down to avoid hydroplaning and increase your following distance.
After Daylight Savings Time begins, you might start encountering some bright glare as you drive during certain times of the day, so make sure you keep an extra pair of sunglasses in your car. Harsh glare can make it extremely difficult to see the road and sunglasses will go a long way in making it easier for you to drive safely.
Car accidents can easily happen at any time of year. Even if you take steps to drive safely, other drivers might not be so careful. If you’ve been injured in a car crash, be sure to contact a car accident lawyer as soon as possible. At Goodwin & Scieszka, we have lawyers experienced in handling Michigan car accident cases who can help answer your questions and can fight for you get the compensation you need. Contact us today to get started.