A recent study by the Federal Highway Administration found that nearly 25% of all motor vehicle accidents in the United States are caused in whole or in part by weather conditions. The bulk of those accidents, according to the report, take place on snowy and icy roads in northern winters.
The Requirement that You Keep Your Car Free of Snow and Ice
Unlike some states, New Jersey has specific laws that require motorists to clear all snow and ice from their vehicles before taking them on the road. That law has recently become even stricter. Under prior law, you could only receive a ticket if accumulated snow or ice from your vehicle caused injury or damage when it flew off your car. Under the new statute, you can face fines simply for driving with snow or ice on your car—up to $75. If you cause injury or property loss, the fine can be as much as $1,000.
Potential Causes of Accidents in Snowy or Icy Conditions
There are a number of hazards brought on by winter weather in New Jersey:
- Limited vision due to snow, ice or freezing rain—It need not be a whiteout or blizzard conditions—a heavy snowfall can be mesmerizing, especially when you are catching the snowflakes in your headlights. In addition, sleet and freezing rain can quickly cover your windshield with a sheet of ice, making it impossible to see anything.
- Slick roads—Most motorists know that fresh snow often provides the best traction, but you never know what’s beneath the snow. In addition, you won’t get any bite in fresh snow if you need to brake quickly. It’s best to maintain moderate and consistent speeds, whenever possible.
- Beware of black ice, a condition that arises when air temperatures are so cold that motor vehicle exhaust freezes when it hits the asphalt or pavement. With black ice, the layer of ice is so thin that it isn’t visible to the naked eye, but it just as treacherous as an inch of ice on the road.
Contact Attorney Howard D. Popper
To learn your options when you have suffered a personal injury on the job, contact our office online or call attorney Popper at 973-993-8787. We have offices in Morristown and Newton, but will come to your home or the hospital, if necessary. There is no charge for your first consultation.
We handle all personal injury claims on a contingency basis. You won’t be charged any legal fees unless attorney Popper recovers compensation for your losses.