Marker & Crannell
Snow and Ice Doesn't Cause Car Accidents, Bad Drivers Cause Car Accidents
Driving in Naperville can be nerve racking on the best of days. The stop and go traffic and the guy who cut you off on the 75th street can make for an exciting commute. Add in a little ice and snow and your commute goes from exciting to an icy gauntlet thrown down by Jack Frost. Inclement weather like snow and ice can make the roads and your commute downright dangerous. According to The Weather Channel weather related car accidents are far more deadly than Tornadoes, Hurricanes, and floods. The roadways of the United States average more than 5,891,000 motor vehicle accidents a year. Of these more than 5,891,000 motor vehicle accidents an average of 1,235,145 involved some sort of hazardous weather. This means that in about 21% of all motor vehicle crashes in the United States weather is a factor. However, this does not mean that we residents of Chicagoland should fear braving the winter roads. As there are precautions that we can take in order to keep ourselves safe should we run into trouble. The first thing we can do is change how we drive when the roads are covered with snow and ice. Driving a little slower and giving the car in front of you a little more space will give you more time to react should you hit a slick spot. However, even the best driver can slide off the road during a bout of winter weather. This makes it important to think like a boy scout and be prepared. This means keeping some food, water, blankets, a snow shovel and a bag of sand or kitty litter in your vehicle during the winter months. You may feel a little silly lugging these items around, but they may save your life should you slide off a snow-covered road. You can use the shovel and sand or kitty litter to free your vehicle from a snowbank. Should you be unable to free your vehicle the food, water, and blankets will keep you comfortable until help arrives. These items can help you if you slide off the road, but what if someone slides into you? When you are in a car accident into you the best tool in your arsenal is your smartphone. You use your smartphone to inform the authorities, preserve evidence of your car accident by taking pictures and/or videos, and call the trial lawyers at Marker & Crannell at 630.995.9995.
Even if you do everything right the inattentiveness or negligence of another driver may cause a car accident. If you’re in a car accident its important you know what to do to protect your rights. Take the following scenario for example: it’s a chilly February morning, you’re on your way to work and sitting at a stoplight. You reach down to adjust your defrost and glance into your rearview mirror. In your rearview mirror you see the car behind you lose control on the snow and ice. At this point all you can do is watch and grip the steering wheel tighter and tighter as the car slides closer and closer, until, “BANG!” the car slams into the rear of your vehicle and you have been in a car accident. The first moments after a car accident are the most hectic. You’re dazed, confused, hurting, and wondering what to do next. First, call 911 – if you know you were injured or if the collision was really bad, ask for an ambulance. Stay in your vehicle until you have a chance to self-assess the severity of your injuries and determine if it is safe to exit. Oftentimes, the safest place after a car accident is in your car. Once you have done this start documenting the scene. This means taking pictures of the scene, your vehicle, the vehicle that struck your car, and anything the vehicles may have struck before coming to rest. Make sure to get photos of any damage to either vehicle. Do not attempt to do this if it is unsafe or you are too injured to do so after your car accident. While it may be tempting do not post these photos or anything about your car accident or injuries on social media. You’re taking these photos to document the scene not get likes and follows on Instagram or Facebook. Once you have spoken to police and documented the scene it is time to treat your injuries. Depending on the severity of your injuries you can take an ambulance to the hospital or have a friend of family member drive you. It is important that if after a car accident you have pain, stiffness or just don’t feel right that you get treatment as soon as possible. After you have been released from the hospital and follow up with your doctor things will become complex. As it is at this point the bills will start piling up, the insurance company will start calling, and you will start wondering:
- “Do I need a lawyer?”
- “Who is at fault for the accident?”
- “What is my case worth?”
- “Who is going to pay my medical bills?”
- “I am off-work. Will the insurance company pay me for my lost wages?”
Don’t deal with the insurance company alone, once you have gotten treatment call the trial lawyers at Marker & Crannell at 630.995.9995. Our experienced attorneys know what you’re your case is worth and can help you piece your life back together after it has been shattered by a car accident. Our lawyers deal with insurance companies every day and have helped thousands of clients in Naperville, Aurora, Wheaton, and the rest of Chicago area recover millions for their injuries.