Safety in the Snow

According to the US Government Department of Transportation, we put ourselves at risk when we drive in the snow.  Here are the facts:

Each year, 24 percent of weather-related vehicle crashes occur on snowy, slushy or icy pavement and 15 percent happen during snowfall or sleet.

  • Over 1,300 people are killed and more than 116,800 people are injured in vehicle crashes on snowy, slushy or icy pavement annually.
  • Every year, nearly 900 people are killed and nearly 76,000 people are injured in vehicle crashes during snowfall or sleet.
  • Snow and ice increase road maintenance costs. Winter road maintenance accounts for roughly 20 percent of state DOT maintenance budgets. State and local agencies spend more than 2.3 billion dollars on snow and ice control operations annually.
  • Each year, these road agencies also spend millions of dollars to repair infrastructure damage caused by snow and ice. (source:

New York State is no stranger to harsh weather conditions, and those of us living on Long Island are preparing for Winter Storm Quinn, starting tonight at 12 midnight and growing in strength over the course of Wednesday, March 7th. The weather channel reports that Winter Storm Quinn will hammer the storm-weary Northeast with heavy snow and strong winds, triggering additional power outages and tree damage just days after another nor’easter knocked out power to over 2 million.

Driving safe in this kind of weather is of utmost importance.  Before you venture out into the adverse weather this week, be sure to take precautions to ensure that you arrive at your destination without incident. Here are 6 tips for staying safe on the road in winter conditions:

  1. DRIVE SLOWLY – very slowly.  Braking can take longer in snowy and icy conditions
  2. ANTI LOCK BRAKES – you do not need to pump modern anti-lock brakes, in fact, this can be dangerous.  If you have older brakes, the traditional pump will prevent skidding.
  3. DON’T STOP SUDDENLY – stopping suddenly on snow or ice can make a driver lose control
  4. CHECK YOUR EXHAUST – make sure it is clear of snow, ice, and debris
  5. WINTERIZE – make sure your tires are meant for the winter!  Even all-wheel drive vehicles aren’t snow-proof
  6. KNOW YOUR NO-FAULT: In its broadest sense, nofault insurance is any type of insurance contract under which insureds are indemnified for losses by their own insurance company, regardless of fault in the incident generating losses. New York is a No-Fault state.

If you do have an accident in Winter Storm Quinn and sustain injuries, you may need an attorney.  TonaLaw is a no-fee firm.  We only get paid if you win, and we offer free consultations.  Email us or contact us if you have a question or concern.

We are here to help.

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