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Safely Driving in the Santa Ana Winds

Today marked the first day of the Santa Ana winds. Which means, not only is there a fire warning but we also need to be careful on the road when we are driving. Sometimes, driving in windy weather conditions, especially in Southern California, can be difficult. Below, our car accident attorney has put together some tips on how to drive safely in windy weather conditions. I have to tell you, this morning as I was driving into work, it was difficult to keep my car steady. Driving in the wind can be tricky and sometimes dangerous. If you have been in an accident, contact an auto accident lawyer in our office to discuss your case. Consultations are free!

Auto Accident Lawyer | Tips on Driving in the Wind

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After last Friday’s thunderstorm and Saturday’s showers, it would appear that fall has finally arrived in Southern California. With that being said, that means that the Santa Ana winds are going to be picking up and fire warnings will be spread all over Orange and LA Counties. And driving in windy conditions, especially when we aren’t used to it, can be hazardous. It is especially important for you to take note of motorcyclists during this time; especially those who are weaving in and out of traffic.

If the windy conditions are too much for you, pull over to the side of the road for a bit to gain composure. However, if you do decide to continue to drive, please take note of the following. The tips below will help you in navigating the windy weather this fall and winter.

Be Prepared

The first thing you want to do when it’s windy is to prepare yourself. Not only mentally but pack your car before leaving. Make sure your phone is fully charged in the case of an accident or emergency.

  • Keep your eyes open – we are always supposed to keep an eye on the road. However, when the weather conditions are less than favorable, it is best to keep an even closer eye out. Be aware of anything on the side of the road that could blow into your path;
  • Slow down – when the winds are between 20 and 30mph, you lose stability in your vehicle. You also lose the ability to react in time because your car is competing with the wind. Sudden gusts of wind can potentially cause problems that no one can anticipate. If you reduce your speed, you have a better chance at avoiding them;
  • Give big-rigs more space – driving on the freeway, in commuter traffic, with a lot of big-rigs is stressful as it is. Add the Santa Ana winds and it is even more so. Give truck drivers a little extra room when it is windy. This is essentially for safety reasons, as they may be forced to suddenly change lanes as a result of a sudden or strong gust of wind.

Watch out for Other Vehicles

Be aware that there are other vehicles on the road that are experiencing some of the same things you are. Which could also mean that there are new drivers on the road. Strong winds are not always constant and usually come in unexpected gusts. Leaving motorcyclists, buses, and large trucks to veer off the road just as easily as your compact car. If you are driving on the freeway, make sure you keep an eye on other vehicles and keep a firm grip on the steering wheel. Make sure you are being especially careful of strong side winds that can hit unexpectedly. As these are the kind of wind gusts that can overtake your car.

Car Accident Attorney | Things to be Wary of

Working for an auto accident lawyer, I have learned a lot over the last two years about what to look out for on the road. Some of the things that we should all look for when there is a high wind advisory are as follows:

  • be careful of crossing high exposed bridges;
  • take note of cars that are towing large caravans;
  • be wary of using top or roof boxes as they can increase the susceptibility to cross-winds;
  • look out for debris on the road
    • tree branches, etc.

Remember, this is a time when you want to take extra precautions on the road. This is not a time to weave in and out of traffic that will likely cause an accident.

If you have been injured in a car accident and you need an auto accident lawyer, contact us to discuss your case. Consultations with one of our car accident attorneys are free!

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