California has gotten three major storms just since the beginning of 2017, and it's resulting in a massive pile of snow in the Sierra Nevada, flooding rivers in some areas and heavy rains across Northern California. Los Angeles has been getting decent rain as well, and rainfall is likely to appear again in the weeks ahead.
Just like anywhere else in the country, wet and rainy weather tends to lead to an increase in auto accidents and traffic snarls in Los Angeles. To prepare yourself, please review the tips below.
- Stay alert and pay attention. You should never drive distracted. Distractions are all around us and most of us have to make a conscious effort to put the phone away while driving. While this is always the case, it's especially important to remind yourself to stay alert when it's raining – the limited visibility and hazardous driving conditions will demand a lot of you.
- Reduce your speed. Adverse weather requires more attention, limits visibility and makes stopping harder. Simply slowing down is one of the best things you can do to prevent accidents in wet weather and fog.
- Make sure your wipers are in good condition. You should replace them every year, or as soon as you notice streaking or poor performance.
- Use your headlights. Stay visible in the poor weather. California law requires headlights to be on anytime your wiper blades are in continuous use.
- Keep your tires in good condition. Bald tires or tires that are beginning to bald do not perform as well in the wet weather. Replace your tires as needed. They are one of the most important safety devices on your vehicle.
- Scan the roadway. Instead of locking your eyes in front of you, make sure to periodically scan across the roadway when it's safe. Doing so will help you identify flying debris or other problematic situations that may require you to slow down or maneuver safely out of the way.
- Increase your following distance. The car in front of you may do something unexpected. The car behind you may skid in your direction. Giving yourself extra space when you can provides a little wiggle room to react to these situations.
- Avoid slamming on the brakes. If you begin to skid, apply light but constant pressure. If you have anti-lock brakes, apply hard and constant pressure but don't pump the brakes. If you begin to skid, AAA says to look and steer in the direction you want to go, and to avoid slamming on the brakes.
As you can see, safer driving in the rain is a combination of driving behavior and adequate vehicle upkeep.
The experienced accident lawyers at Kirtland & Packard have been practicing in California for a very long time. Our law firm was established in SoCal in the 1930s. We are passionate about aggressively advocating for our clients and pursuing maximum compensation on their behalves.
For a free case evaluation, please call our law firm at (855) 711-4933. We are proud to fight for people from across the state. We are based in El Segundo and have a satellite office in San Francisco. Please call us today to find out if we can help you and your family after a serious accident.