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Foggy Winter Conditions Increasing Car Accident Risks in CA

December 31, 1969

During this time of year, there are counties throughout the state plagued by dense fog. This poses a serious driving hazard for everyone. Fog season usually lasts from November through February. Even though the seasonal occurrence is largely predictable, we still see some serious accidents resulting from fog, speedy drivers and traffic congestion.
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For this reason, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) has implemented Operation Fog. To help with this campaign, officials with Caltrans have implemented an Advanced Warning System (CAWS). This a system of nearly 20 Changeable Message Signs (CMS) and weather stations with close to 40 speed monitor locations. Fog can reduce visibility for drivers to a quarter of a mile or less, creating some seriously hazardous conditions.

Whether you're traveling north to play in the redwoods, you're traveling south to seek warmer weather or you live in the middle of it all, our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys ask that you be cautious in these winter driving conditions -- especially when driving through dense blankets of fog. There are some safety precautions and tips that all drivers should follow in these dangerous conditions.

The signs that you'll see throughout the area, will display carefully calculated messages (regarding weather and traffic conditions) that will read "Caution Slow Traffic Ahead," "Drive with Care" and more! Be aware of the driving conditions you're heading into and adjust your driving habits accordingly. Your reactions to these conditions are going to make or break you.

To help you to keep the speed down, officials with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) have implemented several "pace units." These units will line the roadways on foggy days to help to regulate the speed of drivers.

Fog Driving Safety Tips:

-Slow it down so you have more time and space to stop if needed.

-Don't slow down so much that you become a risk to other drivers.

-Keep your headlights on the low-beam settings. Never drive with only your fog or parking lights on.

-Be careful when crossing the road or crossing at intersections when it's foggy.

-When your visibility is reduced because of fog, roll down your window and listen for traffic.

-Turn on your windshield wipers and your defroster to help yourself to see out of the front window.

-Watch for CHP pace cars to guide you.

-Remember that wet brakes can affect braking efficiency.

-When you know roadways are foggy, try to postpone your trip.

-If you can no longer see, or you don't feel safe driving, don't stop in any lanes of traffic. Make sure you pull far off of the road and wait it out.

-When stopping, try to utilize the closest off-ramp or parking lot.

-Be patient. Do not pass lines of traffic.

-Stay alert for hydroplaning warnings.

-You can call the Caltrans Highway Information Network (800-427-ROAD) for more information on current highway driving conditions.

If your or a loved one has been injured in a traffic collision, contact HOWARD LAW P.C. for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case. Call (800) 872-5925.

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