This installment of the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog Post will deal with Brian Goldfinger’s tips on driving in Winter Wonderland.
Now that winter is here (officially), it’s important to get a refresher on how to stay safe when road conditions get hazardous on account of bad weather.
Brian Goldfinger has represented his fair share of personal injury clients who have been involved in serious motor vehicle collisions where winter weather has played a role.
“Most car accidents are avoidable” says personal injury lawyer Brian Goldfinger. “Speed and road conditions generally play a role; but so does bad judgment, and having the right equipment on your vehicle”.
Mr. Goldfinger will help the Toronto Injury Lawyer Blog readership in further understanding how to stay safe while driving in winter conditions.
1. Snow Tires are essential! This statement rings true because we live in Ontario, Canada which is a cold weather climate. If we lived in a warm weather climate, like Florida or Arizona, then snow tires wouldn’t be essential. New snow tires can be expensive. But keep in mind that if you have snow tires on your vehicle, you may be eligible for an insurance discount . You also don’t have to buy brand new tires. Used tires, at a discounted price will do as well provided that they are road safe. Shop around for the best price. “You can’t put a price on your safety” -Brian Goldfinger
2. Good wiper blades and windshield wiper fluid are just as important as snow tires! Think of this equipment as essential for your eyes. If you can’t see where you’re going, it’s akin to an accident waiting to happen. It won’t matter how fancy your snow tires are, or how highly rated your all wheel drive is. Good wiper blades and properly winter rated wiper fluid will help prevent accidents from happening. The investment is minimal. This equipment can be picked up at an store that sells automotive parts, or even at your local gas station. “You need to see where you’re going when you drive” -Brian Goldfinger
3. Slow down! If it snows, Canadians generally give Canadians a pass if they’re running late. Brian Goldfinger has even seen a Judge of the Superior Court excuse another lawyer for attending late at a hearing on account of snowy weather. It happens! If you’re worried that you’re going to be late and it’s a dire situation, then leave early. You can also use your Bluetooth device to notify the party you’re supposed to meet that you’re running late on account of the winter road conditions. Speed kills. Speed on snow and ice isn’t a good recipe. There is no shame in slowing down should the weather not co-operate that day. Arrive alive.
4. Stay put if it’s an option. If it’s snowing very badly, and you hear alerts from the Ontario Provincial Police to stay off the roads, then listen to those alerts. There is no sense putting your safety and the safety of others at risk given the warnings from the police to stay off the roads on account of poor winter road conditions. Those alerts mean something.
5. Pull over. There is no shame in pulling your vehicle over to the side of the road and putting on your 4 way flashers waiting for the road weather conditions to get better. This is an option available to all drivers. Brian Goldfinger has to stress this because many don’t know that pulling your vehicle over to the side of the road and putting on your 4 way flashers to wait for better conditions is allowed! You can certainly do this. We wouldn’t recommend getting out of your vehicle because that’s not safe. Staying in your vehicle in these circumstances is generally the safest place, with some remote exceptions.
6. Don’t follow too close. Brian Goldfinger never understood why people seem to tailgate more when it rains, snows or it’s icy on the ground. Just a casual observation. Leave sufficient distance to break. Whatever distance you perceive that to be, we would recommend doubling or even tripling it in snowy or icy conditions. You will have less time to stop if the roads are slippery, even with super grippy snow tires. Leave a safe distance to react, break, slow down, and bring your vehicle to a complete stop. Even the best snow tires can skid in the snow and ice, and there’s little you can do to prevent that.
7. See and be seen! Making sure that your day time running lights are working, your brake lights, your head lights, all of your lights on the vehicle are working is important. Reaction and stop times on a snowy and icy road get compromised on account of the weather. Seeing other motorists and having other motorists see you early is beneficial and can prevent serious accidents from happening. Running your car out in the snow with a busted tail light is contrary to the Highway Traffic Act, and just isn’t safe. It’s putting your safety, that of your passengers and other motorists at risk. This is something nobody wants.
8. Take a Defensive Driving Course. If you want something cool to do, check out a defensive driving course. Great first date idea? It will teach you a lot of interesting techniques, and put you in some fun, stunt like scenarios. You’ll feel like a Hollywood stunt man! You may even be eligible for a credit on your insurance if you successfully complete the class and such a program is offered by your car insurer.
Enough law talk? Sure. Congratulations to Toronto FC on capturing the 2017 MLS Cup! Brian Goldfinger can remember when this team couldn’t even score a goal. They hadn’t made the playoffs over their first 10 years of existence; which is unheard of. Yet, fans continued to support the club, week after week for some strange reason. It’s strange because the hardcore TFC fans are knowledgeable of soccer/football. They can tell a bad team when they see one, and TFC was a terrible club for so many years! The fans who cheered loud and proud over that decade of impotence; this one’s for you. TFC Clap Clap Clap.