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Updated Winter Safety Tips for 2014/15 from Goldfinger Personal Injury Law

Last year around this time, our law firm published our top winter safety tips in the ever popular Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog. If you didn’t catch those tips, you can read about them here.

Environment Canada is predicting a milder winter, compared to las year.The’re predicting less snow, less ice, and much warmer temperatures vs. last year’s harsh winter.

But ask yourself. Do you really believe Environment Canada!?!?! I swear, when they predict sun, it rains. When they predict sunshine, it rains. You get the picture.

In any event, would such a prediction from Environment Canada stop you from getting you ready for another Ontario Winter?

So, without further a due, here are Goldfinger Personal Injury Law’s revised winter safety tips for the 2014/2015 winter season. The old tips we previously published are still good,but these tips add to the old.

1. Don’t mix and match your snow tires Having travelled all across Ontario, I se all sorts of cars and all sorts of drivers. I see a lot of people struggling to find work, or struggling financially to make ends meet following a serious car accident. People will do anything they can when times are tough in order to save a few dollars. One of those cost saving efforts is putting on 2 snow tires, and 2 regular tires so that you don’t need to purchase an entire set of snows. 2 snow tires are not as good as a complete set. The tires are designed to work in tandem with their brother tires, no with other non matching tires. This will cause your vehicle to be off balance, which may lead to the driver having less control on the road. I realize that snow tires can be expensive;p and mixing and matching your snow tires with all season tires might seem like at thrifty idea. Unfortunately, it may put you at greater risk of accident.

Advice: Purchase USED Snow Tires from a reputable dealer/source
2. Invest in good wiper blades and have them properly installed What’s the use of wiper blades if they don’t work? And if they don’t work, that means you can’t see the road and where you’re driving. If you can’t properly see the road, you’re putting yourself, your passengers and other motorists at risk of injury. Walmart and Canadian Tire sell very reasonably priced wiper blades, and they also have garages attached to install them properly. There are even some wiper blades which are specially designed for Canadian winters.

3. Top up fluids and makes sure your car battery is working properly If you don’t have any wiper fluid in your car on a slushy highway drive along highway 401 on a miserable January day, you’re better of pulling over to the side of the road and waiting for somebody to pick you up and drive. If you can’t see properly out of your front wind shield then you shouldn’t be driving. Get all of the other fluid levels and your car battery checked as well to make sure that your car performs on those very cold days. What’s worse than getting to your car in an empty parking lot and then finding out that it won’t start, or won’t run properly because it hasn’t bee properly maintained. To all my friends in Northern Ontario, where it’s UBER COLD, investing in a Block Heater is never a bad idea and is necessary in certain parts of Ontario in the extreme cold conditions.

4. Make sure your headlights, tail lights and turn signals are working properly Keeping on that theme of visibility, make sure that the lights on your vehicle are working properly so you can see and be seen. Visibility is one of the biggest preventers of car accidents. What do injury lawyers often hear when we examine Defendants at Examinations for Discovery? An at fault Defendant will often state that they just didn’t see the accident victim approaching in their vehicle. The result become a serious car accident causing injury. snowman.jpg

5. Put Down that Cell Phone and Pay Attention to the Road! This tip applies all year round, but it makes an even bigger difference when road conditions and visibility are poor on account of ice and snow. Your reaction time on an icy or snowy road surface is going to be less than optimal compared to when the roads are clear. Your reaction time goes down dramatically when a motorist is focusing on their phone instead of an icy roadway.

6. Don’t drink and drive at that Holiday Party The Holidays are a lot of fun. But plan ahead and don’t drink and drive. Take a cab. I hear that the UBER car service is fantastic and a great alternative to taxi if you can’t find one. Have a designated driver. Spend the night. Stay in a hotel. There is NOTHING WORSE than the horror of a catastrophic dunk driving collision. Knowing that the car accident could have been prevented had the drunk driver not made the choice to drink and drive is a terrible thought.

7. Take a Winter Safety Driving Class! This is a pretty hardcore tip because who really enjoys driving school? But, if you’re nervous about driving when road conditions are less than optimal, there are classes yu can take to help you manage the winter roads better. Young Drivers of Canada and CAA both offer Winter Driving Courses which are worth looking in to if you’re nervous driving in the winter. The cost of these classes isn’t very expensive, and they’re well worth the time and financial investment involved. Who knows; you might learn a thing or two or it may improve your levels of confidence driving in the snow.

8. Get an autoclub membership Shameless plug for autoclubs such as CAA? Sure. But they’re a good thing. If you need a tow because of a car accident or you’re driven in to a ditch, or you simply can’t start your car, having a membership with an autoclub can be a life saver.

If you have any other winter driving safety tips, we’d love to hear from you. Send us an email to info@goldfingerlaw.com with those tips and who knows; it might get used in the next edition of the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog’s Winter Safety Tip Edition! We would certainly give you full credit on the tip!

Enough law talk? Sure. Congrats to Toronto’s basketball team on another win, this time out west in a place they’ve traditionally had a hard time winning games. I’ve been impressed that everyone has stepped up now that their all start shooting guard is out of the line up with a strained groin. Ouch! Those injuries are nagging ones that never seem to go away. I hope our All Star gets the rest he needs and bounces back in superb form.

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