The winter in the Mid-Hudson Valley region is a very dangerous time for
motorists. Heavy snowfall and significant accumulations of ice and create
very dangerous conditions on the roadways resulting in heavy traffic.
Even the most careful of drivers can easily be involved in a
motor vehicle accident during heavy seasonal weather.
Even light snow or freezing rain can create a serious hazard on the roadway.
Even long after the precipitating event, snow can remain and ice can form
on the roadways. Many times, this ice is black ice, which can be very
difficult to identify on the roadway because it is virtually clear. These
changes are magnified at night, when more ice forms and it is even harder
One of the most common types of winter car accidents our
experienced Newburgh car accident attorney handle are rear-end car collisions. These types of accidents occur when
one car strikes another car from behind. During the winter, rear-end car
accidents are more common because the time it takes for a motor vehicle
to stop is increased. If a motorist fails to take that into account, they
may drive into the rear of the car in front of them. Sometimes even the
slowest speed and most cautious driver will still be involved in a rear-end
collision; either as a driver causing the accident or a victim on a snowy road.
Whether the weather is dry and clear or icy and a whiteout, New York law
places a presumption of negligence on the motorist who causes the rear-end
collision. This is governed by
New York Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 1129, which states that the driver of a motor vehicle shall “not follow
another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due
regard for the speed of such vehicles and the traffic upon and the condition
of the highway.”
As it is written, this section of law directly applies to snowy and icy
roadways because drivers are obligated to exercise reasonable care under
the circumstances. Thus, if the condition of the highway is coated in
snow and ice, a motorist must take that into account and lower his or
her speed to ensure he or she can stop and avoid a
rear-end car accident. This section of law is flexible, and applies equally to dry and icy conditions.
What changes is the standard of care which is determined by a trier of
fact, which is commonly a jury in a personal injury matter.
It is important to note that even in low-speed rear-end collisions, a victim
can be seriously hurt. Any type of rear-end collision is very serious
because it places the opposite force on the victim’s car that the
car is rated for. The spine and base of the head at the neck is very fragile,
and can easily be permanently damaged in any
Read more about winter car accidents caused by hazardous road conditions in our
article available here. Find out about liability and car accidents caused by snow and ice in our
blog post here. Learn about liability in whiteout conditions and how heavy snowfall can
still create liability in
our blog post available here.
Our personal injury attorneys at
Mainetti, Mainetti, and O'Connor, P.C. have over 100 years of combined experience working with victims of personal
injury accidents throughout New York. We understand how to effectively
represent clients who have been injured in serious car accidents, particularly
throughout the Mid-Hudson Valley region in Kingston, Poughkeepsie, and
Newburgh where we have offices. Hear
what our clients are saying about us here and learn about just some of our
successful results here. If you or a loved one has been injured in a personal injury accident,
please do not hesitate to contact us by calling 845-340-HURT (4878) or
toll free at 866-440-4452, or by using the
convenient contact form here.