Tropical showers can produce slick road conditions, as well as an increased risk for flash flooding, both of which can have a major impact on travelers. Car accidents in these types of situations are common, and can be severe and life threatening. It is important for all Florida residents, as well as visitors, to be aware of the potential impacts rain and flooding can have on traveling, and to use caution in ensuring that both you and your passengers stay safe.
Heavy Rains Wreak Havoc on Florida Roadways
An August 2016 ABC news report states that heavy rains and flash flooding have caused numerous accidents throughout the Florida region. Tropical storm activity has resulted in road closings and traffic delays, while some areas closer to the Gulf Coast have been completely submerged due to flooding. The Federal Highway Administration (FHA) reports that slick, wet road conditions present significant dangers to motorists, who may tend to downplay the risks or be unprepared for driving in these types of hazards. The FHA estimates that of the more than five million vehicle accidents that occur each year, close to 25 percent are the result of adverse weather conditions, and rain in particular can present significant hazards to motorists, as well as their passengers. The impacts of rain on road conditions include the following:
- Decreased visibility increasing the risks of collisions with objects and other motorists;
- Decreased road traction, resulting in the inability to control the vehicle;
- Poor vehicle performance, resulting in slower response times;
- Delays in emergency management, resulting in slower response times when accidents do occur.
In addition to rain itself, condensation can result in foggy conditions that further affects visibility, preventing drivers from seeing even a few feet in front of them. In the case of flash floods, there may be little warning, and motorists could find themselves immersed in water in a matter of mere seconds.
Driving in Tropical Storm Conditions
When driving in heavy rains, the FHA recommends drivers slow down, keep both hands on the steering wheel, and avoid any distractions that could divert their attention from the road. Motorists should closely follow news reports concerning the weather during heavy rain or storms, and heed any traffic information provided. Be alert for emergency roadblocks or other signs of traffic delays or problems, and use caution when driving in flood prone areas. Additional tips from the National Weather Service include the following:
- Beware of standing water in the roadway, and do not attempt to pass through it. Even a foot of water can cause you to lose control of your vehicle and sweep your car away.
- If there are potential flood conditions ahead, turn your vehicle around and find another route.
- Use caution at night, when it can be harder to see flooded condition on the road.
Reach Out to Us for Help
If you or someone you care about is injured in car accident, contact our experienced Florida car accident attorneys today. At Hogan Frick, we can advise you on the best course of action, so that you can get the compensation you need to recover.