There are plenty of reasons that Kansas City auto accidents happen that could be avoided, such as driving under the influence of alcohol, distracted driving, speeding. However, there are also many accidents that just cannot be avoided. As experienced Kansas City car accident attorneys who are highly familiar with all kinds of scenarios that result in accidents – and sometimes injury – we understand there are situations that cause panic to arise in even the best of drivers.
When you panic, it’s easy to react without thinking. Panic induces an immediate response when you are put in a situation which you cannot control. There are certain “roadway emergencies” we want to discuss, and what to do if you find yourself in one of these situations.
Tire blowout: Slamming on your brakes is a natural reaction if you have a tire blow out. A tire blowout can be frightening but keeping your wits about you can save your life. Instead of slamming on your brakes, simply decelerate gradually, pull to the shoulder of the road and immediately turn on your emergency flashers. Slamming on the brakes on a busy interstate or highway can result in a rear-end or side-impact collision, which can be deadly.
Any Roadway Emergency: If you experience any emergency on a roadway, stay inside your vehicle and off the road to wait for help. Missouri has a program through MoDOT which offers free assistance for stranded motorists in the Kansas City and St. Louis areas. Put on your emergency flashers to alert other drivers that you have a disabled car or emergency situation.
Deer or Wildlife Accident: As the seasons change, there will be increase in the number of deer crossing roadways all across the state of Missouri and Kansas. Annually, collisions with deer result in $4 billion in property damage and about 200 deaths, according to the Insurance Journal. November is the most common month for car-deer collisions due to mating season. However, accidents with wildlife can happen any time of the year. If you see a deer getting ready to cross the road, slow down and try to alert other drivers of the danger. Most people swerve off the road or into another lane to avoid hitting a deer. This is actually the most dangerous reaction, according to safety experts. Swerving can result in hitting a tree, losing control on gravel or the shoulder of the road, having a rollover accident, or even colliding with another vehicle in the oncoming lane. If faced with a deer in the roadway, stay in your lane and firmly apply the brakes to stop in a controlled manner. Many auto insurance policies require you to stay on the road and in your own lane if you collide with an animal. These types of accident claims are usually covered under the comprehensive portion of your automobile insurance policy, which is the non-liability portion that does not affect your insurance rates.
Slippery Road Conditions: What should you do if changing lanes or sudden braking on a slippery road or at high speed leaves you skidding? Never slam on the brake or jerk the steering wheel in the direction you want to go. Instead, take your foot off of the accelerator, and gently steer the wheel toward the direction you intend to go. Avoid over-steering, and straighten the wheels when you recover traction. Gradually stopping in this situation can save your life and avoid causing a collision.
In all of the above scenarios, the most important thing you can do to avoid an accident is to remain as calm without panicking. At Griggs Injury Law, LLC our Kansas City car accident attorneys want to help make driving on the city’s roadways and interstates safer and less stressful. If you have been involved in an accident caused by someone else, call us today to see if you may be entitled to compensation.