Car Accidents in Portland and Elsewhere Spike through December, MaineDOT Says

With Maine’s worst storms typically coming our way in December, we usually see a spike in the number of vehicle accidents during this time. This is because even some of our most experienced drivers seem to have “forgotten” how to drive in winter conditions. As the holidays approach, more and more motorists travel through the state to visit with friends and family. This increase in traffic causes a significant increase in your risks for a car accident in Portland.
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Our Portland car accident lawyers understand that the winter serves as the most dangerous time on our roadways. Motorists are urged to be cautious behind the wheel when navigating through the congested holiday traffic. To help reduce the risks of an accident, the Maine Department of Transportation (MaineDOT) offers some important driving tips to keep you safe as the slow flies, through the holidays and through the entire winter season.

Safe Driving Tips from MaineDOT:

-Always drive slowly through ice and snow.

-Remember that stopping on ice without skidding takes time and distance. For this reason, you should never follow too closely to the vehicles around you, you should always drive under the posted speed limits and always keep all of your attention on the roadway. Skidding is common near bridges, off ramps and intersections as this is where black ice can form without ever being noticed.

-Don’t turn your four-wheel drive vehicle into a true “off-road” vehicle!

-Keep in mind that four-wheel drive can help you to get going faster, but it really does nothing to help you to stop any faster or help you to keep better control of your vehicle once you’ve lost traction. Yes four-wheel-drive vehicles drivers need to be cautious, too!

-Never tailgate.

-Keep extra distance between you and other vehicles to avoid becoming a part of a chain-reaction accident.

-Don’t take chances and pull out in front of oncoming vehicles.

-Remember that when the roadway is wet that you might not be able to slow down and that you’re probably not able to accelerate as quickly either. Go easy on the pedals.

-Avoid using your cruise control in winter weather.

-Try to avoid any sudden or exaggerated steering, accelerating or braking.

-If you need to stop and you’ve got anti-lock brakes, push the brake pedal down firmly and hold it down. If you don’t have these kinds of brakes, remember to pump the pedal when you need to stop quickly.

-Curb distractions, and stay alert and focused.

-Keep an eye on the vehicles ahead of you. They can help to locate problem spots on the road which may give you the split second you need to avoid an accident.

Motorists are asked to be extremely cautious on our roadways throughout the holiday season, regardless of the weather conditions. Please be safe and enjoy your holiday season.

Contact the experienced injury attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates if you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident in Bangor, Portland or in any of the surrounding areas. Call 1-800-804-2004 to make a free appointment to speak to an attorney about your case.

More Blog Entries:

Drowsy Driving Prevention Week Focuses on Car Accidents in Bangor and Elsewhere, Maine Injury Lawyer Blog, November 12, 2011

Maine’s First Taste of Winter Weather Boosts Car Accidents in Bangor, Maine Injury Lawyer Blog, November 2, 2011