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Fall Driving Hazards, Car Accident

Drive Safely: Top 6 Fall Driving Hazards to Avoid!

Sep 26, 2022 | Blog

Drive Safely: Top 6 Fall Driving Hazards to Avoid!

With the fall upon us, it is hard to not become excited for the cooler weather and all the great activities and holidays that are to come. 

But, as temperatures change, we tend to see an influx of new fall driving hazards.

With that said, now is a wonderful time to brush up on vehicle safety to avoid putting yourself, your passengers, and other motorists in danger. 

Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban has put together a list of the top six fall driving hazards to avoid.


1) Slick Leaves on the Road

Leaves are to fall as fish are to water – they are also quite dangerous on roadways! If you come across a pile of leaves while driving, be cautious. If the leaves are wet, they can be as slippery as a patch of black ice.

Moreover, piles of leaves can hide potholes and other driving hazards like garbage and/or debris. Stay alert and take it easy!

Fall Driving Hazards, Car Accident

When leaves on the road become wet, they act like a sled on snow and any object on top of wet leaves becomes an object potentially skidding out of control.

2) Children Crossing: 

As we mentioned in our last blog post, the fall means back-to-school traffic as increased children are heading back to the classroom. According to the NHTSA, it is not only school that brings children out in droves – but also Halloween, which is right around the corner. It is important to make sure you follow the speed limit, properly yield when you are required to, and keep an eye out for all pedestrians, regardless of age. 

Fall Driving Hazards, Car Accident

It’s illegal to go around a school bus that’s stopped to let children off. Make sure to always stop and wait for all passengers to exit before you start to move!


3) Darkness: 

When Daylight Savings Time ends in early November, you will notice that your commute begins and ends in the dark. It is important to remember that this change does not alter others routines. Although the light has faded, people will still be walking their dogs or be out for a run or bike ride. It is imperative that we keep these folks in mind, while also driving defensively. Take a step further and ensure your headlights are in working order before this happens, that way you can drive with peace of mind. 

Did you know? On average, 25% of our driving takes place at night, but more than 50% of traffic deaths occur then.

Fall Driving Safety, Car Accident

With the decrease in light levels during nighttime driving, it’s important to make sure that your car is in good working condition so that you can see other cars and they can see you.

4) Wildlife: 

Recent studies show that we are 3.5x more likely to hit an animal, especially a deer, in October and November than any other months of the year, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. It is important to make sure that you are aware of animal crossing signs on your commute, and that you yield when required. If you have struck an animal while driving, stop the car, remain at the scene, and call your local authorities. 

Fall Driving Hazards, Car Accident

It’s important to always check for and stop at an animal crossing signs you may come across — not only will it help protect you, but it helps to ensure the safety of our beautiful wildlife!


5) Fog and Frost: 

Unbelievably, fog and frost are not just present in the winter. A refreshingly chilly autumn morning produces fog which will certainly reduce visibility and depth perception. This is the right time to use the fog lights that many cars have. Using their wide, low beams allow drivers to see better in these moments. It is also good to resist the urge to use your high beams – they tend to make visibility worse and can also be detrimental to motorists traveling in the opposite direction. 

Fall Driving Hazards, Car Accident

Keeping your car warm is effective with the right defrost settings. Rather than trying to match outdoor temperatures and conditions, use your heater to warm up the exterior of the glass.

6) Tires: 

Most people do not know that tire pressure will drop one pound per square inch of pressure for every 10 degrees the temperature decreases. It is important to make sure you check your tire pressure before heading out. If you are using a tire pressure gauge from your local auto parts store, the correct pressure can be found on a decal pasted on the driver’s side door jamb, or on the door itself and/or in the owner’s manual. If you see that your tire(s) are low on air, do not set out on the open road as this can be a leading cause in an accident, injuring both you and other people. 

Fall Driving Hazards, Car Accident

Low tire pressure is a very regular occurrence, but it is also one of the most dangerous. As a result, very dangerous consequences may ensue.

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