New York residents should consider the tips offered by AAA and the National Safety Council when it comes to safe winter driving. First, vehicles must be made ready for cold conditions. A mechanic could check components like the brakes, ignition and battery while also assessing tire wear, tire pressure and antifreeze levels. Drivers should also know the function of safety features like anti-lock braking, which comes in handy during this season.
Furthermore, it's important for a vehicle to contain an emergency kit containing essentials like jumper cables, tire chains, an ice scraper, a first-aid kit and flares or reflective triangles. When stranded in the snow, a driver should not push their vehicle out. Instead, it's better to signal distress with a brightly colored cloth. Drivers are encouraged to keep a container of gas and fresh antifreeze in the car as well.
When driving, one should keep a distance of 8 to 10 seconds from the vehicle in front. Accelerating and decelerating should be done slowly, especially if the vehicle has no traction control. If a whiteout diminishes visibility, drivers can pull over and wait for conditions to improve.
Drivers should avoid using cruise control or the parking brake in winter weather. In addition, it's not wise to mix radial tires with other kinds of tires. Another tip is to always keep the gas tank above half full.
Those who fail to act in a safe manner behind the wheel could be considered negligent if they cause a crash. A victim will want to see a lawyer to determine if they have a strong case under personal injury law. Even a strong case will meet with opposition from the defendant's auto insurance company, but a lawyer can negotiate on the victim's behalf for a fair settlement covering medical expenses, vehicle damage, lost wages and more.