In March 2020, the Prime Minister’s lockdown announcement brought the country to a near standstill which saw road travel plummet to levels not seen since the 1950s. As well as the positive impact this had on the environment, the dramatic reduction in road traffic injuries and fatalities was a welcome consequence of an otherwise forgettable year.
Shortly before lockdown, the Ministry of Justice announced a drop in the number of personal injury claims to levels which had not been as low since 2011.
Road Safety measures can take some credit but the MOJ attributed the fall to the impact of legislation which has sought to tackle the costs of civil litigation.
The number of claims is set to decrease significantly further as the much-delayed PI reforms finally take effect from 1stJune. However, reduction in claims sadly does not correlate with a reduction in injuries or even deaths as the reforms is expected to act as a deterrent to victims of accidents taking legal action.
As the old adage goes, “prevention is better than cure” and with this in mind, the advice below is designed to highlight what you need to consider and steps you can take to avoid an accident:
Poor Weather Conditions
When considering the risks of driving in poor weather conditions, the first step is to always ensure your car is road-safe.
Some statistics that you should be aware of are:
- 73% of accident are due to wet roads
- Snow & Sleet account for 17% of weather-related accidents with 13% of the accidents being on roads that are icy
- 3% of accidents are due to the fog
It should come as no surprise that wet roads and snow are the main causes of weather-related accidents and safety measures during poor weather could reduce the number of accidents significantly.
Key safety measures to reduce the risks of an accident are:
Always ensure your car has sufficient amount of washer fluid.
As the registered driver of the vehicle, you are required to ensure your vehicle has the correct amount of washer fluid. Washer fluid must be at the correct level to allow keep windscreen free from dirt and allow you to see the road clearly.
Always ensure the windscreen wipers and windscreen washer are operable
It is important to regulalrly check that the windscreen wipers are working sufficiently as well as adequate levels of windscreen washer is used.
Always ensure the vehicle you are driving is free of snow and ice prior to the start of the journey
The law requires the driver to ensure they can see ahead with all windows being free from snow and ice
Service and Maintenance
It is obvious yet easily forgotten that your vehicle must always be serviced at regular intervals with the maintenance of the vehicle being of good quality.
The Highway Code
You must abide by the legal requirements as set out in the Highway Code!
Invariably, some accidents are completely unpreventable and the fault of others. If you are/were involved in an accident, do not hesitate to contact us. Our team of highly experienced lawyers will continue to seek redress for those who sustain injuries or incur any other losses as a result of an accident.
If you are confused by the new process or you simply need advice on what to do following an accident, please feel free to contact us and take advantage of our offer of a free consultation.