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Inclement weather and liability in vehicle collisions

On Behalf of | Nov 12, 2021 | personal injury |

When the temperature drops and winter weather makes an appearance, you may want to stay snuggled up inside every chance you get. However, for most people, staying inside and off the roads for an entire season is not possible.

What happens when icy roads cause an accident?

Who is at fault?

Slippery ice may cause a collision, but the driver of the sliding car is liable for the damages caused by the accident. When operating a motor vehicle, every driver has a duty of care to the other people on the road. In addition, there are requirements that state drivers must change their habits in order to adapt to various weather and road conditions. Despite the presence of inclement weather, a person who is at fault for an accident has breached that duty of care and driven negligently.

What are the factors for negligence?

There is a reasonable expectation that anyone operating a vehicle on the roads takes certain safety measures to avoid causing a collision. In the winter, these can include defensive driving measures such as:

  • Driving slower to account for slick spots
  • Keeping tire tread and air pressure at appropriate levels
  • Leaving extra space between cars

Despite taking all the necessary precautions, accidents can still occur. This does not mean, however, that negligence is not a factor. The car that causes the accident is likely liable for the damages of the crash.

Even when you make all the right safety decisions, other drivers’ negligence can lead to accidents.