Drivers in Mississippi generally don't need to worry about inclement winter weather. Snow, ice and hail are infrequent weather occurrences. However, wet, rainy weather is much more common. The spring often brings with it increased precipitation and foggy mornings in some areas.
Both rain and fog can increase the risk for serious collisions. Keeping an eye on weather conditions and adjusting your driving habits to reflect the current weather is the best way to help yourself and the people who share the road with you to arrive at your destinations safely.
Wet roads can lead to hydroplaning and difficulty stopping
When the roads are wet and slick, drivers can experience a number of unpleasant consequences. Wet roads are a major contributing factor to crashes. One of the most notorious is hydroplaning. Hydroplaning is a particular risk when you are at an intersection or merging into faster moving traffic.
It involves your vehicle's wheels contacting a thin layer of oil lifting from the pavement by the water. When your tires can't get traction, they can spin, leaving your vehicle to move in unpredictable, jerky manners or not at all. Other vehicles may crash into you as a result of hydroplaning. You could also experience hydroplaning while already moving at fast speeds, which could impact your ability to turn or stop the vehicle.
Slick roads are another noteworthy concern. When the roads are wet, stopping and turning quickly can become much more difficult. The older your tires and brakes on your car, the more likely you are to have serious issues with both stopping and turning on wet pavement.
Proper vehicle maintenance is also important for spring road safety
As previously mentioned, bald or worn tires offer very little protection against skidding, slipping and hydroplaning. Replacing your tires when they show obvious signs of wear is an important way to keep you and other people on the road safe.
Rotating and checking the pressure on your tires is also important. Properly inflated tires will get better traction and help you maneuver more safely on slick roads. Finally, ensuring that your brakes and various signal lights are in functioning order can also reduce your overall risk of a collision.
Unfortunately, not everyone will be as proactive as they should be when it comes to changing their driving habits for the changing weather in the spring. If you wind up in a crash caused by someone driving inappropriately for the weather or because of a failure to maintain a vehicle, you may have the right to take action against the other driver.
Discussing the circumstances of the crash and the cost it has created for you and your family with an attorney is a good way of determining what options you may have under Mississippi law.