Winter weather has been a part of east coast life this season for at least a couple of months. Along with the danger and inconvenience posed by the cold weather and frigid wind chills, the advent of winter weather also greatly increases the road risks in the beltway region. Snow, Ice, and freezing rain all affect the ability of drivers to safely see the roads and control tier vehicles, especially at highway speeds. A recently published news article discusses a rollover accident involving a pickup truck, which demonstrates that these winter driving dangers are multiplied further when large vehicles are involved, especially when they are not equipped for traveling on winter roads.
According to the facts discussed in the news report, a winter storm created hazardous conditions on an interstate near a major city on the eastern seaboard. While municipal crews were working to clear an accident involving a pickup truck on one side of the highway, another truck slipped off the road on the other side, striking a barricade and rolling onto its side. No injuries were mentioned in the report, however, a traffic camera recording of the incident shows how easily the result of the crash could have become tragic.
Drivers are responsible to maintain their vehicle in a reasonably safe condition to drive in the road conditions that are present at that time. When winter weather strikes or is anticipated (especially if a warning is issued), drivers should be prepared to travel safely. To safely prepare for winter conditions, drivers should consider keeping traction devices (such as tire chains) in their cars and installing them when needed. Studded winter tires also greatly improve traction on dangerous roads. Drivers with rear-wheel drive vehicles, such as many pickup trucks, must be extra careful to avoid high speeds and use four-wheel drive if available.