Winter months can bring severe cold, snow and ice storms, and ultimately poor driving conditions that can cause auto accidents. With an increase in auto claims should come an awareness of how to minimize the risks of auto accidents in the winter months and promote safety on the roadways as much as possible. Now is the time to outline some beneficial ways to increase winter safety driving tips. Don’t let winter weather wreck your driving.
Promote Safety During Hazardous Winter Weather
Regardless of winter weather, you still have to leave your home at some point to go to work, run errands, and maintain schedules, but how do you plan to remain safe during poor travel conditions that winter brings? Before you head out in winter weather, here are some essential tips to keep you and others safe while driving in unsafe circumstances.
Address Your Vehicle Maintenance- During the winter months, it is wise to make sure before a storm hits, you winterize your vehicle. This should include an ample check of car fluids, tires (pressure and wear and tear), windshield wipers, and car heater.
Stock Your Vehicle- If you are heading out, make sure you have adequate supplies should you get stranded. Things you should consider having access to in your vehicle include water, snacks, blankets, flashlights, extra clothing, and bags of sand or anything to help provide traction if your car gets stuck.
Wear Winter Clothing- You may only be going 5 or 10 miles away, but what if you get stranded and are stuck in your car for hours during a very cold winter storm? Make sure you are dressed warmly before getting into your car. Things to consider are heavy coats, scarf, gloves, hats and winter boots/shoes.
Allow Extra Travel Time- Plan ahead! When winter weather hits, you need to add extra time to allow for the road conditions and possible wrecks. Your speed will be greatly reduced and will take longer to arrive at your destination. Being in a hurry during a winter storm will only increase your chance of having an auto accident.
Following an Auto Accident
Regardless of whether you follow the above recommended guidelines, accidents can and will still happen. In order to simplify the claims process following an auto accident, here are some key considerations.
Record Accident Details- When the accident happens it is imperative you call the police and while you are waiting for them to arrive, document accident details such as taking photos of the accident scene from all angles. Also, you need to photograph any and all damages to each car and any damaged property. This will help when the police arrive to tie down specific information on how the accident occurred.
Contact Your Local Alabama Independent Insurance Agent- The quicker the claim is reported, the faster you will get the ball rolling on the claims handling process.
Exchange Information– Before the police arrive, it is recommended you exchange pertinent information with the other parties involved. This should include auto insurance information (insurer name, policy #, and phone #), other drivers’ names and addresses, and contact information. Having this information will help expedite the claim because everyone is on board with necessary information.
Cooperate with the Insurer- You will most likely be contacted by the claims adjuster of either your insurer or the other drivers’ insurance company with questions about the accident. In an effort to expedite the claim, you should give your full cooperation and answer all questions pertaining to the accident. With full cooperation you will most likely get quicker and better service.
Drive Defensively and Stay Safe During Winter Weather
Winter storms are known for creating havoc on the roadways, but if you follow these winter safe driving tips, you will help promote safety for you and others on the roads. If you have any questions regarding your Alabama auto insurance policy or need further information on how to drive safely during the winter months, contact us at 256-704-7400. Drive defensively and stay safe!