Did you know that motor vehicle accidents are more likely to happen in the rain? This is especially true in Florida, where heavy rains can cause slick roads and dangerous driving conditions.
If you are ever involved in an auto accident during a rainstorm, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately. At The Fran Haasch Law Group, we have helped many clients get the compensation they deserve after being injured in a car accident. Contact us today for a free case review.
Rainy Weather in the ‘Sunshine State’
Florida is known for its sunny days and beautiful weather. But when it rains, it pours! Central Florida is known as the lightning capital of the U.S., and Florida has one of the highest precipitation levels of any state. Thunderstorms are also a common occurrence from late spring to early autumn.
Heavy rainstorms are also common in Florida, and they can cause serious problems on the roads. From flooding to hydroplaning, there are several dangers that drivers and motorcycle riders face during a rainstorm. Weather can also cause erosion of road shoulders and sudden potholes, creating unsafe conditions.
The Dangers of Driving in the Rain
Florida is the third most dangerous state for driving. In 2021, there were over 400,000 car accidents in the state. And while not all of these accidents were caused by rain, many were. Studies show that 10% of all car accidents are caused by rain.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that wet pavement causes 70% of weather-related car accidents, and rain causes 46% of weather-related car accidents. On average, more than 6,000 people are killed, and 445,000 people are injured due to weather-related accidents.
Rain-Related Car Accidents
Rain and wet roads aren’t just dangerous weather conditions; they’re deadly. Heavy rain can cause hydroplaning, which is when a vehicle’s tires lose contact with the road. This can lead to loss of control and accidents. It’s important to slow down and drive carefully in the rain to avoid hydroplaning.
Another danger of wet driving conditions is reduced visibility. Rain can make it difficult to see the road ahead, leading to accidents. Be sure to turn on your headlights and wipers when driving in the rain, and take extra care to watch for other vehicles.
Motorcycle Accidents and Rain-Related Crashes
Wet roads and rain are especially dangerous for motorcycle riders. Even a light drizzle can create dangerous road conditions for motorcycles. Without the protection of a car, bikers are more vulnerable to injury in the event of an accident. Motorcyclists are already 28 times more likely to die in an accident than people driving cars. And when you add wet roads to the mix, the risks increase even more.
When it rains, motorcyclists may have to deal with reduced traction, increased braking distances, hydroplaning, underwater road hazards or obstacles, and decreased visibility.
How to Avoid Rain Related Accidents
We’ve all been on the road during a storm and felt the anxiety that comes with it. But fortunately, there are things you can do to stay safe:
- Drive slowly and carefully. Speeding is one of the leading causes of accidents, and it’s even more dangerous on wet roads.
- Avoid driving through flooded areas. Just six inches of water can cause your car to lose control, and two feet of water can carry away most vehicles.
- Don’t be a reckless and aggressive driver. Be patient with other drivers and vehicles on the road.
- Don’t tailgate. It’s important to give yourself extra space to stop on wet roads.
- Use your wipers and headlights. You should always use your windshield wipers when it’s raining and turn on your headlights so you can see and be seen.
- Be aware of motorcycle riders. Motorcycles are more difficult to see and especially vulnerable on wet roads.
- If your car does start to hydroplane, gently ease off the accelerator and do not brake. Once you regain control of your vehicle, slow down and drive cautiously.
Special Safety Tips for Motorcycles
If you live in Florida, there’s a 100% chance you’ll run into rain while riding. If you’re riding a motorcycle in the rain, there are some special things you need to do to stay safe.
Be Prepared Before You Hit the Road
The best way to stay safe on a motorcycle is to be prepared before starting your engine. Check the weather forecast before you head out and avoid riding if inclement weather is coming.
Make sure your bike is in good working order if you must ride. Check your lights, tires, and brakes to ensure they’re all in good condition.
Wear the Right Gear
Another way to stay safe on a motorcycle is to wear the right gear. This includes both protective gear and weather-appropriate clothing. For protection, you should always wear a DOT-approved helmet, as well as gloves, boots, and a jacket.
It’s also important to wear clothing that will help you stay dry and visible. Choose brightly colored items that will make you easier to see, and consider adding reflective strips to your gear. You might also want to invest in a good pair of rain pants and a waterproof jacket.
Other Important Tips for Motorcyclists
Drive defensively, and be aware of other drivers who might not see you.
Remember, you’re sharing the road with other vehicles, and not all of them will be as cautious as they should be. Be prepared for other drivers to make sudden stops or turns, and don’t tailgate.
Give yourself plenty of space to stop, and always use your turn signals.
Have You Been Injured in a Car or Motorcycle Accident?
Sometimes we take every safety precaution we can think of, and we still get hurt in an accident. If you or someone you love has been injured, the experienced personal injury attorneys at The Fran Haasch Law Group can help.
We have handled numerous accident claims across the Tampa Bay Area and know insurance companies’ strategies to avoid rewarding full compensation.
If you feel you have been the victim of a motor vehicle accident through no fault of your own. Our attorneys are prepared to help you navigate the legal process and work toward securing the maximum compensation you are owed. Call (727) 784-8191 or contact us online for formal legal advice. We’ll help you get started on receiving maximum compensation for your personal injury case.