The Rainy Season is Here. How Much Does Rain Affect Car Accidents?
The rainy season is here in the Pacific Northwest if our five-day weather forecast is any indication. We don’t get the most rain of all the states in total inches but we sure have a lot of drizzly days that keep our roadways wet. We know that weather plays an important role in road conditions and the accident rate but the question is, how much does rain affect car accidents?
If you were injured in a wet weather accident because of the negligence of another driver, you should speak to a car accident attorney as soon as you have received appropriate medical care. The injury lawyer can assess the details of your accident and injuries and discuss your legal rights. If your case is taken on, the lawyer will fight for a fair settlement on your behalf.
How much does rain affect car accidents?
It turns out that rain has a huge impact on car accidents! Data shows that the vast majority of weather-related crashes actually happen on wet pavement (70 percent) and during rainfall (46 percent). Yes, that means that rain is responsible for more accidents than snow and ice.
According to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, rain affects visibility distance, pavement friction and lane obstruction. When a driver has poorly working windshield wipers, water splashes up from the roadway or there is very heavy rainfall, visibility can be dramatically reduced and this increases the risk of accidents.
In the rain, drivers may experience:
- Reduced roadway capacity
- The need to reduce speed (which can lead to rear-end accidents if speeds are not reduced)
- Increased travel time (which can lead to road rage accidents)
- Reduced traction (which can lead to slipping and sliding out of the lane or into another vehicle or object)
- and overall increased risk of accidents.
Out of the average of 5,891,000 motor vehicle crashes that happen each year, about 21 percent of them are weather related. That’s almost 1,235,000 weather-related* crashes every year! These accidents are responsible for almost 5,000 deaths and 418,000 injuries annually.
Source: Ten-year averages from 2007 to 2016 analyzed by Booz Allen Hamilton, based on NHTSA data).
*A weather-related crash is a collision that occurred during inclement weather such as rain, sleet, snow, or crosswinds.
Driver responsibility in wet weather
As we know, most car accidents are caused by driver error. Even though wet road conditions make it more difficult to drive safely, drivers are still responsible for slowing down and leaving extra space between themselves and the car ahead of them in order to prevent a collision. They are also responsible for maintaining their brakes, tires and windshield wipers to ensure that their vehicle operates as safely as possible in difficult road conditions.
Seek the help of a car accident attorney
If you or a loved one was injured because of the negligence of another, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal rights. Let an experienced car accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!