Cold weather is slowly creeping into the weather forecasts around Alabama. While day-time temperatures are currently still above the normal chill of winter, temperatures during the night and early morning have already produced much frost and ice across the state.
Unfortunately, icy car windows are more than a hindrance for morning travelers. Inadequately defrosted windshields and windows decrease a driver's visibility, ultimately leading to higher chances of motor vehicle accidents on Alabama roadways. Despite such obvious sight obstruction, many motorists fail to take the time necessary to properly remove ice and/or frost from their windshields before hitting the road, presumptively hoping that the defroster will alleviate any visibility concerns during the early stages of their journey.
A study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration concluded that approximately 52% of all auto accidents occur within a five mile radius of a driver's home. The NHSTA study also found that 69% of all motor vehicle accidents occurred within a ten mile radius of a motorist's home.
In context of icy windshields, most vehicles have not reached adequate temperatures to properly defrost windows in the time it takes to travel five miles from one's home. Thus, while many close-to-home accidents do not involve winter weather conditions, the statistics suggest that adding any extra obstacle to safe driving, like icy windshields, may only increase the already-high threat of sustaining personal injuries in an automobile crash during the early stages of one's travel route.
Decreasing the chance of an automobile accident due to poor visibility from frosted windshields and windows is easy to administer. When winter weather presents itself, the following tips should be taken to maximize visibility during morning travels:
- Allow extra prep time to your morning routine to allow for time to heat your car before your departure.
- Keep an ice scraper in your car to help remove ice and frost from all windows.
- If applicable, utilize your vehicle's independent ignition system to heat your car while you finish prepping for your departure.
- Store your car in a garage during the winter months to avoid frosted windshields and windows.
For more tips on avoiding motor vehicle accidents, skim the various pages on our website. In addition to providing news on Alabama personal injury law, our Birmingham motor vehicle crash attorneys frequently post tips on how to decrease the threat of motor vehicle collisions and other serious accidents.