Winter temperatures in Wyoming often plunge into the teens, and many cities in the state will receive more than 100 inches of snow before the spring thaw. Figures from the U.S. Department of Transportation reveal that accidents on roads covered in slush, ice or snow kill more than 1,300 road users each year and injure a further 116,800, but the risks of an icy crash can be reduced significantly by slowing down, maintaining safe distances and driving defensively.
While reducing speeds in treacherous conditions is probably the best way to avoid a winter car accident, driving too slowly should be avoided. Motorists who slow to a near walking pace in snow are far more likely to be involved in a rear-end collision and may encourage other drivers to swerve dangerously. Investing in a quality set of winter tires could be a good idea for motorists who tend to become anxious on icy roads. Winter tires have broader tread patterns to provide more grip on snow and are made out of softer rubber to improve cold-weather traction.
Ensuring tires are properly inflated is another prudent winter driving precaution. Tires should be checked at least once each week as pressures fall when temperatures drop below the freezing point. Drivers should also get into the habit of checking weather reports before they set out and giving themselves more time to complete their journeys when road conditions are likely to be poor.
Drivers are expected to take all reasonable steps to protect other road users from injury, loss or damage. When accidents take place on icy roads, experienced personal injury attorneys may call for the vehicles involved to be inspected to gather evidence that could show that this duty of care was not met. Inspections might reveal that needed maintenance was not performed, tires were underinflated or lacked tread or crucial safety systems were malfunctioning.