Staying Safe on the Roads this Winter
Motor vehicle accidents increase significantly during the winter months. Statistics from ICBC show that the average number of collisions doubles from fall to winter. The cause is, of course, the adverse weather conditions, and at this time of year snow and ice is already present on many of BC’s roads.
Tops tips for staying safe on the roads in winter
While you can never control the weather, there are things you can do to limit the risks this winter, helping you (and the vehicles around you) to stay safe on the roads. This includes –
- Checking your tires
Fit your vehicle with four matching winter tires or M+S tires that are marked with a snowflake. Also, make sure that they have good tread. Winter tires are designed for cold conditions and are made to remain soft in low temperatures, meaning you’ll have a much better grip.
- Getting your vehicle winter ready
But don’t just focus on your tires. Make sure the rest of your vehicle is winter ready too. Fit new windshield wiper blades and fill up the windshield wiper fluid. Check the battery, brakes, lights, belts and cooling systems are in good working order.
- Keeping an eye on the weather conditions
If you do need to drive somewhere, check the weather conditions first. If a storm is coming in, plan your journey around it. If weather warnings are issued, consider if you really need to make that trip at all!
- Going slowly
While driving on the roads, go slowly. That way if you do skid, it will be much easier (and will give you more time) to control the vehicle. Driving too fast for the conditions is a common cause of winter accidents and led to 44 fatalities in British Columbia in 2016 alone. Don’t be lured into a false sense of security because you have an SUV – such vehicles are made to improve performance, not safety.
- Being gentle on the gas and the brakes
Slamming on the brakes increases the likelihood of sliding out, as does having a heavy foot on the gas pedal. So, go gentle on both the gas and the brakes – even if this does seem counter-intuitive when you’re skidding on a section of ice.
ICBC claims lawyer
If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident on British Columbia’s roads this winter, it is likely that you will be entitled to claim Part 7 benefits from ICBC. If the crash was not your fault, you may also be entitled to pursue a personal injury claim for compensation.Go back to Blog