Slow It Down in Fog, Smoke and South Florida Rain

Officials with the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) are asking you to “Beware of Smoke & Fog.” It’s all a part of a new safety campaign put on by the FHP, the Florida Forest Service and the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV).
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In a matter of seconds, conditions can change and become dangerous. This can be the result of weather, smoke and fog. Officials are asking drivers to be prepared for these conditions. Wilfires, smoke, fog and even heavy rain can significantly reduce your ability to see. Our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers are asking you to be as safe as possible during these conditions.

“The agencies want every motorist to be aware of the dangers involved with weather events that affect our roadways and how fast those events can occur,” said Col. David Brierton with the FHP.

Safety Tips for Driving in Low Visibility:

-Slow it down. Don’t slam on your brakes though. That’s how rear-end collisions happen. Many of the accidents in these conditions are multiple rear-end collisions because drivers are going too fast and following too closely!

-Keep your headlights on low. Putting on your high beams is only going to hinder your visibility. You need every foot of visibility you can get in these situations.

-If you feel the need to stop, do so way off to the side of the road and make sure you turn on your emergency flashers.

-Keep distractions out of the driver’s seat. We oftentimes talk about the dangers affiliated with distractions, but these dangers are amplified in these conditions. Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road!

-If you see any hazards out there, call your local law enforcement agency or dial 9-1-1. Help to warn other travelers and to keep everyone safe.

-Check the weather and traffic conditions before heading out. This will help you to avoid any problem areas. Plan your trip accordingly. Choose safe routes with less traffic.

Smoke from prescribed burns and wildfires can be just as unpredictable as our ever-changing weather conditions. When you add fog into the mix, it only gets worse.

Remember that catastrophic accident that happened near Gainesville on Interstate 75? It happened back in January when 10 people were killed and another 18 were hospitalized, according to CBS. The story reports that “drivers were blinded by a combination of fog and smoke caused by a nearby brushfire.”

The scene of the accident spanned for about a mile, involving nearly 20 vehicles — 7 of them being tractor-trailers.

“As we were coming through the prairie, it went from crystal clear visibility to nothing in 50 feet,” said Bert Thomas, crash survivor.

This can happen anywhere in the state at any time. Be sure you’re safe out there and you’re prepared for the worst. Drive safely — especially in low-visibility conditions.

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in an auto accident, contact Fort Lauderdale Accident Lawyer Richard Ansara at 954 761-3641 or toll-free at 877-277-3780 for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case.

More Blog Entries:

Broward Traffic Safety “Operation Safe Driver” Opens Efforts to Reduce Seasonal Risks, Broward Injury Lawyer Blog, October 27, 2012

Prescriptions Drugs and Car Accidents in Broward, Broward Injury Lawyer Blog, September 24, 2012