Winter is here; there is no doubt about it. It is something that Minnesotans typically deal with, but it doesn’t mean they are experts at driving in the snow and ice — despite what some might think. Every winter, weather-related car accidents affect numerous people, but the weather is not fully at fault for these events. Drivers have a responsibility to adjust their driving habits when the weather turns.
There are numerous things drivers can do to make sure they drive safely this winter. If safe drivers get in accidents with unsafe drivers, they may have legal recourse. The state allows victims of negligent drivers or — in the event of fatality — their surviving family members to seek compensation for their losses.
Winter driving safety tips
The best thing anyone can do when driving in snowy and icy conditions is take it slow. It may make other people mad, but that is on them. No one should go faster than they feel is comfortable when road conditions are far from ideal. Other tips include:
- Be courteous
- Be aware of your surroundings
- Pull over if you need to
The only person you can control is yourself. If you happen to spin out or lose control despite driving as carefully as possible, pull over and take a minute to regain your composure before going on your way. If you cause an accident or someone else hits you, stay at the scene.
If you are a victim…
If you are the victim of a weather-related crash or if you lost a loved one in such an event, the losses you have experienced may follow you for the rest of your life. The physical, financial and emotional burdens are not something you should have to bear alone. When ready, if you want to, you may file a personal injury, wrongful death or any other civil claim applicable in your case against all parties thought responsible for your losses.
Take time, but not too much
It is okay to take your time, grieve, heal, do what you need to do before pursuing civil actions. Just do not take too much time. There is a statute of limitations in personal injury and wrongful death cases. This means you only have so much time from the date of the accident or the date an injury became apparent to seek compensation.