Do Tires Cause More Car Accidents in Cold Weather?
Winter is here, and with it comes the traditional festivities we all enjoy. This also means thousands of drivers will hit Alabama’s roads and highways. Driving through the states, icy roads may pose a danger to drivers if proper safety measures are not taken. This is especially true for car owners who don’t take time to verify their tires are safe to drive through ice and snow. Montgomery car accident lawyer Rick Morrison explains more about car tires during cold weather.
Can Cold Temperatures Affect My Tires?
Car tires are affected by temperature, especially in colder weather. During the winter season, a tire’s air pressure can drop dramatically. For instance, if the temperature drops ten degrees, your tire will lose an average of one to two pounds per square inch (PSI). Running on low-pressure tires in cold weather can lead to car accidents, motorcycle accidents, and truck accidents.
Underinflated tires can lose their shape which can create problems. Normally, the profile of a passenger car’s tire is somewhat squared. However, if the car’s tire loses air pressure, the weight of the vehicle will create a more rounded profile. This is mostly due to the force exerted over the tire’s sidewalls. Underinflated tires can create friction on the tire walls and uneven wearing of the tread. Moreover, driving on an underinflated tire can cause the tire to blow up.
Additionally, your car’s tire bead – the inner edge of the tire – can loosen up if temperatures are below zero. This can create an air leak which can cause your tire to deflate over time. It is essential to keep an eye on your tires before attempting to drive your car in colder weather.
All manufacturers provide the information regarding your vehicle’s recommended tire pressure. Usually, this information is located in a placard or sticker inside the driver’s door. Proper pressure is required to provide stability, control, and grip while driving. Therefore, you should make sure your tires have the appropriate air pressure before your next trip – especially if you’ll be driving on slick or icy roads.
The Dangers of Driving on Icy Roads
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), more than 70% of the country’s roads are located in cold, snowy regions. Additionally, almost 70% of the nation’s population lives in these regions. Slippery, icy roads reduce tire friction and grip, which can cause a driver to lose control over their vehicle. According to USDOT, 24% of all weather-related crashes happen due to snowy, icy roads. Additionally, more than 1,300 people die every year in the U.S. due to freezing, slippery road conditions.
Many people may believe driving on deflated tires will give you an edge over a snowy road. However, once roads have been plowed, your tires may generate too much friction, which can make you lose control over your vehicle. Whether you are driving with regular, winter, or all-weather tires, optimum pressure is essential in preventing potential accidents. To reduce the risk of serious crashes during the winter season, drivers should ensure that their tires meet the manufacturer’s specifications and recommendations.
Liability for a Car Accident in Cold Weather
Determining fault in a car accident in the snow will depend upon the circumstances surrounding the crash. Many factors may contribute to your accident. Some of the reasons another party can be liable for your accident are listed below. A defective tire accident lawyer can help you assess the situation, and your options, in greater detail.
As mentioned above, snow and ice can reduce your tires’ grip. This means all drivers should operate their vehicles at a reasonable speed while driving in cold weather. However, careless, negligent drivers may disregard recommended speed limits and speed through snow and ice. Unfortunately, this reckless behavior often leads to car accident injuries, such as head injuries and back injuries.
Tailgating refers to an individual closely following another vehicle. Usually, people must keep a safe distance between themselves and other cars to prevent accidents such as rear-end collisions. This becomes more prevalent in the winter season, where stopping your vehicle can be extremely difficult on slick ice.
Poorly Maintained Roads and Highways
Generally, the state and its municipalities are in charge of keeping their roads safe from hazards. Sadly, many roads are in poorly maintained condition, which could increase the chances of an accident – especially during cold weather.
Montgomery Defective Tire Attorney Handling Personal Injury Claims in Alabama
Facing the consequences of a car accident can be extremely difficult. This is especially true for car accident victims who sustained severe injuries. Montgomery personal injury lawyer Rick Morrison from The Morrison Law Firm can fight to obtain the compensation you are entitled to. To learn more about your case in a free, confidential consultation, call our law offices today at (334) 625-6128, or contact us online.