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Stay Safe When Winter Weather Hits Maryland Roads

The weather in Maryland this time of year can be unpredictable. Because of this it is important to be prepared in case winter weather hits and there is ice and snow on the roads and in your driveway.

Getting Ready to Head Out

When there is snow and ice on the roads in Maryland the first question to ask yourself is whether or not you really need to go, especially if a snow emergency has been declared. If it is possible to just stay home, you should. If you do have to leave, it is important to make sure you are prepared as possible by taking time to make sure your vehicle is properly prepared.

Have a Complete Emergency Kit - drivers should be prepared for a potential breakdown in the snow by carrying a winter survival kit in their trunk. This should include a shovel, flares, jumper cables, a flashlight, and a snack

Double Check Your Vehicle and Traffic - You car should have all snow and ice removed, and you should be sure all fluids all fluids, the defroster, battery levels, and tires are properly filled for your trip. In Maryland, you can check traffic levels also by checking cameras maintained by Maryland DOT.

Navigating the Road

Once on the road, it is important to continue to drive cautiously and take other precautions on the road. This starts by wearing your seatbelt, and making sure your passengers do as well. You'll need to keep in mind that you cannot drive the same way you do when the weather is good. Your following distance will need to increase -- especially behind snow plows or emergency vehicles. You should never try to pass a snow plow, and should stay back at least three car lengths. On ramps and bridges, you'll need to exercise even more care, since these are prone to freezing even before other parts of the road. Still, with all your preventative measures in place, it is still likely that you may slip or skid on an icy road. If this happens, stay calm and steer into the skid, rather than slamming on your brakes.

Other safety measures that apply in all weather conditions, such as limiting distractions and not driving while you are under the influence or fatigued also apply and are extra important during poor weather.

When An Accident Occurs

If you are involved in an accident, be sure to gather as much information about the incident as possible, and get checked for injuries even if you don't feel them. In order to determine if a personal injury claim is appropriate in your case, and that the case gets the proper attention, consult with a personal injury attorney about your case as soon as possible.

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