Speed, Rain May Have Been Factor in Fatal Bowling Green Car Accident
A single-vehicle accident resulted in the death of a 28-year-old woman from Scottsville, Kentucky, Saturday afternoon.
Per a report by Bowling Green Daily News, the crash occurred in Warren County at around 3:30 p.m. when the woman’s vehicle—a 2007 Honda Civic—left the roadway in the 9000 block of Cemetery Road. The vehicle then struck a tree and came to rest with its wheels against the tree.
The Warren County Sheriff’s Office responded to the accident scene after a volunteer firefighter alerted them about the wreck on Kentucky Highway 234. After an investigation law enforcement officers say that a slick roadway caused by recent rainfall—as well as speeding—may have been contributing factors to the accident.
What Makes Rain and Speed a Deadly Combination?
One of the most common causes of all types of accidents is speeding. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that 31 percent of fatal car crashes are caused by speeding, with around 13,000 people dying every year in these types of accidents.
Speeding is dangerous enough on its own, but when it’s combined with inclement weather and dangerous road conditions, the risks that drivers and their passengers face increase significantly. The Federal Highway Administration says that wet pavement from rain, snow, sleet, and ice contribute to 16 percent of vehicle accidents and 73 percent of weather-related accidents.
Some of the reasons these factors increase the risk of fatal accidents include:
- Reduced vehicle control
Both speed and rain make it more difficult to control your vehicle. When you’re exceeding the speed limit for a given roadway, you’re more likely to find it difficult to navigate turns, dips, and curves—especially if you’re unfamiliar with the road. And when pavement is wet or slick from rain, ice, snow, and sleet, the tread on your tires will be less effective and less capable of gripping the roadway, making it easier to hydroplane, spin out, or even leave the roadway.
- Less chance to react
When you’re traveling at a low speed, you have much more time to react if anything goes wrong, such as a brief loss of control or an unexpected movement of a vehicle in front of you. But when you’re speeding, your time to react decreases significantly, making it harder to brake, steer out of the way, or even brace for impact. Driving at a reasonable speed that’s at or below the speed limit not only keeps you in the flow of traffic, but it also gives you a chance to avoid accidents.
- Poor visibility
Whether it’s a light drizzle or a torrential downpour, rain affects visibility and makes it more difficult to see the roadway and other vehicles near you. In some cases, rain can reduce visibility to just a few feet, making it extremely dangerous to drive, especially on high-speed roadways like highways and interstates and winding roadways with frequent turns and curves. Reduced visibility is exacerbated and made more dangerous when drivers speed. Always reduce your speed during rainfall and pull over to the side of the road if your visibility is severely compromised.
It’s important to remember that even small amounts of rainfall can make roads more dangerous—especially in the immediate aftermath of a shower. Roads collect oil and other waste products from vehicles, and when those materials mix with rain water, the pavement can become extremely slick and make vehicles likely to hydroplane. That’s why you should be extremely cautious and reduce your speed, even if it just started raining.
At Matt Hardin Law, our auto accident attorneys know that speed and rain contribute to many accidents every year. It’s important for all drivers to be aware of the dangers of these contributing factors and to adjust their driving habits accordingly to best protect themselves and their families.
If you or someone you know was hurt in a crash caused by a negligent driver who was speeding or driving aggressively in bad weather, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. To find out how our legal team can fight for your right to recover money for things like medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, just dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.