Can Another Driver Blame Wet Road Conditions for a Crash?
Summer not only brings warmer weather, but also rain. June, July and August average 10 or more rainfall days per year. That means there may be a greater risk of rain-related car crashes that could result in serious injuries or deaths.
Rain can certainly make it easier to lose control of a car, which is why some drivers may blame a crash on wet road conditions. While it may sound logical to argue that rain caused a crash, drivers are still expected to maintain control of their vehicles, regardless of the weather.
Below, our Bloomington-based car crash lawyers discuss fault for a crash that occurs in wet road conditions and the responsibility of drivers in inclement weather conditions to prevent a crash. If you have questions after getting injured in a car crash, give our firm a call today to discuss your claim.
There is nothing to lose by contacting our firm and meeting with us to learn how we may be able to assist you. The initial consultation is free. There are also no upfront fees if you hire our firm to represent you.
Call today to learn more: (612) TSR-TIME.
Why Does Rain Make a Crash More Likely to Occur?
Even a light rain could make the roads more dangerous. Everyone knows water can make the roads slicker, but rain on roads is a different level of hazard because oils from tires and cars cause an extra layer of slickness making it harder for tires to maintain traction. This could lead to hydroplaning, which occurs when the tires cannot push water away faster than it accumulates in front of them. This results in a car sliding over the road without the driver being able to control it. Hydroplaning may be even more likely when vehicles are traveling at high speed and the brakes are applied.
There is a common misconception that there needs to be a lot of water on the road for you to hydroplane. However, it does not take much water to hydroplane especially with roads oils blended in.
Wet roads can make it harder for vehicles to stop as quickly. When drivers hit the brakes, their cars slide further than normal before coming to a complete stop. The front of the car could end up in the intersection instead of behind the white line. Drivers could end up crashing into the rear of another vehicle because their car did not stop as quickly as it normally would on a dry road.
The first 10 minutes of rain on a road is the worst because of the oil.
Old Tires Do Not Perform as Well on Wet Roads
Another factor that contributes to crashes in rainy conditions is old tires. Many drivers do not take the time to properly maintain their tires. Old tires lack tread and uninflated tires lack traction. Both of these preventable problems make it harder for drivers to control the vehicle.
Liability for a Crash in Wet Road Conditions
Drivers are liable for most car crashes because of some form of negligence, such as speeding, failing to keep a proper look out or impaired driving. When the roads are wet and a crash occurs, drivers could also be found negligent for a variety of reasons, including:
- Traveling at an unsafe speed, given the road conditions and weather
- Failing to leave enough space between your vehicle and the one in front of you
- Failing to properly maintain tires
- Malfunctioning brakes or brakes that are not performing as well as they should
- Turning at an accelerated speed, even though it was unsafe
- Failing to use windshield wipers
- Failing to replace worn windshield wipers
- Driving while drowsy or fatigued
- Failing to stay within a lane
- Failing to check blind spots
- Distracted driving
- Driving with malfunctioning or broken headlights or taillights
Drivers are expected to follow all traffic laws and take reasonable steps to try to prevent a crash. It is reasonable to expect drivers to take extra precautions based on weather and road conditions. That means leaving more room between your car and the one in front of you, so you have enough time to stop.
Drivers cannot blame the weather because every other driver is dealing with the weather. If one driver was following another driver too closely and he or she suddenly hit the brakes, which often happens in rainy weather, the rear driver would be at fault for a rear-end crash. The rear driver should have left more room in front of your car.
Another argument that could be used to assign fault for a crash in wet weather is that the at-fault driver did not need to be driving. For example, some drivers may have physical disabilities or poor eyesight or a documented history of trouble driving in bad weather. The at-fault driver may say the roads were too dangerous because they were wet. However, the victim could argue the at-fault driver could have chosen to stay off the road.
While drivers cannot control the weather, they can control how they react to it.
Contact TSR Injury Law to Discuss Your Car Crash Claim
No matter how simple you may think your case is, the insurance company may not offer full compensation for your damages. In fact, they will be looking for things to use against you and may even try to trick you into saying something that hurts your credibility.
You need an experienced advocate fighting for your rights. There are no upfront fees for our services and no fees while working on your case. We have a proven record of securing hundreds of millions on behalf of our clients. We are also prepared to take cases to court to pursue the justice and compensation our clients are seeking.
TSR Injury Law is here to assist you. Call (612) TSR-TIME.