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Driving in the Aftermath of a Hurricane

Hurricane Florence is bringing unprecedented amounts of heavy rainfall across much of South Carolina. In the aftermath, flooded roads create traffic nightmares and are something all residents will likely need to contend with. Even if you are not in an area directly affected, the fallout increases your risks of car accidents resulting in potentially serious personal injuries. The following offers tips to help keep you and your family safe when driving in the aftermath of a hurricane.

Use Caution on the Roads

When it comes to increasing your risks of a car accident, adverse weather conditions play a major role. While the impact of a fierce snowfall on road surfaces are obvious, people often underestimate the dangers posed by even small amounts of rain.

According to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), weather events are responsible for nearly 20 percent of car accidents each year, with rain and wet road conditions attributed as being the most common causes. Between reduced visibility, increased traffic tie ups, and a lack of traction, crashes and collisions are something you need to actively avoid. When you add in the dangers of potentially flooded out roads and bridges, it is easy to see why officials urge residents to stay off the roads if at all possible.

Storm Driving Tips

If you do have to go out, either during a storm or in the aftermath, it is important to follow a few simple safety tips. Travelers Insurance recommends the following:

  • Give yourself plenty of time. Realize that tie ups and delays are likely and your usual route may not be available. Allow plenty of time to get where you need to go.

  • Drive at or below the speed limit. With wet road conditions, skidding and losing control of your vehicle is more likely. Go slow, driving under the speed limit in downpours or any time there is water accumulation.

  • Keep both hands on the steering wheel. Heavy wind gusts can combine with rainy road surfaces to run you off the road. To keep your car under control, you need to grip your steering wheel firmly.

  • Avoid distractions. While it is easy to get distracted by what is going on around you or phone calls and texts you may be getting from family members, potentially dangerous road conditions demand your complete attention.

  • Avoid aggressive driving behaviors. Driving behaviors such as tailgating, improper passing, and failure to yield are dangerous anytime. They could significantly increase your risk of a car accident in the aftermath of a storm.

  • Do not drive through standing water. Even a few inches or so of water could wash your car away, and it is impossible to tell exactly how deep a puddle is prior to driving through it. If you come across standing water, play it safe and find an alternate route.

Reach Out to Us Today for Help

When unexpected events put you and your loved ones in jeopardy, the Surasky Law Firm, LLC is here to help, providing the legal protection you need. If you’ve been in a car accident, contact our Aiken, SC personal injury attorneys today.

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