The Chicago fall will soon yield to the notorious Chicago winter. Our winters are not for the faint of heart. It takes a true hardiness to endure the plunging temperatures and the cold winds that whip off the Great Lakes. It also takes preparation to stay safe and avoid accidents while driving when the ice and snow start to cover the roads.
But what sorts of things can help us stay safe when we travel in inclement weather? Here are some recommendations from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to help you.
- Plan out your route in advance. Be well acquainted with directions and any maps you are using. Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination. Check the weather reports and if necessary leave early.
- If your car stalls or stops, remain in the vehicle. If you are able to run the car, do so only enough to remain warm.
- Keep your car properly maintained. This includes checks on windshield wipers, the battery, treads on tires and antifreeze.
- Have important and useful items close at hand. These can include jumper cables, a flashlight, an ice scraper and a shovel. You should also have some form of abrasive material such as cat litter or sand.
- For longer trips, pack water, food, a cellphone and medication.
Hopefully some of these tips will prove useful. But the fact is that winter weather produces very hazardous road conditions. One thing you cannot prepare for is being in a collision with someone who is driving recklessly on a slick, wintery surface. A high velocity impact on a slippery road could send your car careening out of control in a manner that you may be unable to correct. The result could be a crash causing catastrophic injuries.
If you are in a car accident this winter, you may need assistance in securing compensation for injuries and damages. A Chicago attorney could possibly help you determine your financial needs and pursue liable parties for recompense.