The deadliest weather for driving is rain. Rainy conditions are more common than other types of inclement weather, and they are often the cause of impaired visibility, slick roadways, and less cautious drivers, resulting in more car accidents than any other weather type.
Rain Causes Twice as Many Accidents
Other weather events put drivers at risk for accidents, but the single greatest weather-related cause or automobile crashes is rain. On average, rainy conditions are involved in more than twice as many serious accidents as snow and sleet and almost four times more severe crashes than ice. With more than 230,000 combined injuries and fatalities each year, the relationship between rain and vehicle accidents is clear.
Contributing Factors to Rain-Related Accidents
Reducing rain-related car accidents requires an understanding of the contributing factors.
Vehicle control relies on friction between the tires and road surface. Wetness, not snow or ice, is the greatest cause of reduced friction, and rain makes the road surface wetter than any other weather event. Cold snow provides more traction than a wet road surface.
Heavy rains can significantly impair visibility while driving. Drivers can reduce their risk for accidents caused by heavy rains by slowing their speeds, using their headlights on low-beam, treating their windshields with rain repellent, and making sure their windshield wipers are functioning properly before they set out on a rainy day.
Rain is much more common, occurring frequently throughout the year in many parts of the country. Its frequency can cause drivers to become complacent when driving in rainy conditions.
Driver Negligence and Rain-Related Accidents
Driver negligence coupled with wet conditions can increase the likelihood and severity of an accident. A reviewing a compensation claim for injuries and loss resulting from a rain-related accident will try to determine:
If the speed of the vehicles was excessive for road conditions
If braking distances were adequate
If drivers were physically or mentally Impaired
If other road hazards such as oil, mud or debris caused by third parties contributed to the loss of friction