During winter months in Michigan, ice and snow can make driving more hazardous. Driving on snowy roads requires specific techniques that all motorists should understand.
When roads are covered with ice, tires are less able to grip the ground. This can affect the way that a car accelerates and how the driver should apply the brakes. Driving conditions may be affected by ice even when the roadway appears clear.
Scientists describe the available traction with the term "coefficient of friction." The amount ranges from one to zero, with one being a lot of friction and zero being none at all. On snow, the number is typically around 0.15; while on ice, the number is about 0.8 on average.
Upgrading a car's equipment can make a major difference in a car's performance during winter months. For example. snow tires are made to cut through snow to get to the road underneath. They are also chemically formulated with material that is able to provide more grip.
Driving techniques also play a role in how a car performs on ice and snow. Drivers should take more time to accelerate, apply brakes and steer than they would under normal conditions. It is especially important to use care when braking and avoid stopping at all whenever possible.
Failure to use proper techniques and equipment while driving on snow may result in a car accident. Car accident victims may have a claim for injuries if they were injured by a negligent driver. Negligence is determined by how a reasonable person would have acted during the same or similar circumstances. For example, if a car accident was caused by a driver's failure to use proper equipment or careful driving techniques during bad weather, a person injured in the accident may be able to show that the driver failed to act reasonably under the circumstances.