Oklahoma residents may find themselves driving in rain or snow, and they should know how risky this can be. The American Meteorological Society stated recently that the risk for a fatal car crash goes up 34% when there is precipitation on the road. A study from the North Carolina Institute for Climate Studies has some additional things to say, some of which may be eye-opening.
Researchers were able to calculate crash risk after analyzing 125,012 fatal crashes that occurred between 2006 and 2011. What sets this study apart from previous ones is that it is the first to use the more precise information given by weather radars rather than the information provided in police reports and nearby weather stations. Researchers knew if and how much rain or snow was falling at the time of every crash.
They concluded that heavy rain raises the risk for a fatal crash by 250% while moderate rain raises it by 75%. Light drizzles were also taken into account: Less than one tenth of an inch per hour was still capable of increasing the risk of a fatal crash by 27%. The Northern Rockies and Upper Midwest saw the highest chances of a rain-related crash while the Northeast and Southeast saw the lowest.
Weather-related car accidents, if they do not end in fatalities, can still lead to serious injuries. Victims may lose their job and be left with a diminished capacity to earn a living. To be compensated for these and other losses, they may file a claim against the other driver’s auto insurance company. Their degree of fault must, of course, be lower than the defendant’s. Legal guidance may prove helpful here with a lawyer to handle negotiations and even litigation.