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Determining Who Caused a Car Accident in Bad Weather

It doesn’t matter where or when – a car accident can always happen. However, the chances of being in a car wreck increase dramatically during bad weather. Almost 22 percent of all car accidents happen in bad weather like rain, snow, fog, or icy conditions.

It’s understandable that road conditions can play a part in accidents, but when injuries are involved and it’s necessary to determine fault and whether a driver was negligent for purposes of recovering compensation things become less certain. Here are some considerations when trying to establish fault for wrecks in less than ideal conditions.


To prove negligence and establish liability, you need to show that the other driver did not act reasonably given the circumstances at the time of the accident. Drivers generally owe others a duty to drive safely, be cautious, and act reasonably. 

Unreasonable Behavior

In inclement weather, it falls to drivers to exercise extra care on the roads because conditions may not be ideal, visibility may not as good as it usually is, it may take longer to stop a vehicle, and it may be easier to hydroplane or otherwise lose control when driving. Signs of negligent driving in bad weather may include:

  • Not using headlights
  • Aggressively changing lanes
  • Not driving at an appropriate speed for the conditions – speed limits are intended as a top speed during ideal driving conditions
  • Reckless driving
  • Failing to clear ice, sleet, or snow blocking visibility on windows and side mirrors

What to Do After a Wreck in Bad Weather

Ideally, after an accident, you notify law enforcement, wait for them to respond, and give statements at the scene to contribute to the accident report. However, in exceptionally bad weather police may not be able to respond.

If they are unable to respond, get drivers’ license, vehicle, and insurance information from the other driver, photograph the scene, get the names of witnesses, and notify your insurance company. As with any accident, after you have finished at the scene you should seek immediate medical attention and contact a skilled car accident attorney. 

Contact a Long Island Car Accident Attorney

The skilled Long Island car accident attorneys at the Falkowitz Law Firm, PLLC how to handle complex car accidents where conditions make it difficult to determine who is at fault. We have the resources and experience to thoroughly investigate accidents and fight for you to receive maximum compensation. 

If you or a loved one were hurt in a side-impact collision, contact us 24/7 at (844)-385-4279 or by completing our online Contact Page to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation. Let us answer your questions, review your unique situation, and get started making the strongest case possible for your recovery.

Gary P. Falkowitz is the Managing Partner and Founding Attorney of the Falkowitz Law Firm PLLC‚ one of the premiere personal injury law firms in New York. Gary received his J.D., in 2005 from St. John’s University School of Law and served as an Assistant District Attorney with the Kings County District Attorney’s Office.

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