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On Thin Ice: Winter Driving & Auto Insurance

Driving in the winter can be very dangerous. The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration’s Road Weather Management Program reports that “over 70 percent of the nation's roads are located in snowy regions, which receive more than five inches (or 13 cm) average snowfall annually. Nearly 70 percent of the U.S. population lives in these snowy regions”. Plus, the winter storms of January 2023 have even made roadways treacherous in California, a state that is not known for extreme winter weather. Overall, every year, roads vulnerable to snow, sleet, ice, and sleet cause roughly 2,000 fatalities and 200,000 injuries.

What are some ways to stay safe and limit your auto insurance costs?

  1. Take good care of your vehicle: It is much more dangerous to drive in rain, snow, and ice when you do not have good tires. Make sure that you keep up with the maintenance on your car.

  2. Pay attention to the weather: Watch the news, check weather forecasts, or set alerts on your phone so that you are aware when extreme weather is on the way. Perhaps it’s smarter to cancel that trip or see if you can work from home if a storm is coming. If you have to drive, you might want to leave yourself extra time on your commute.

  3. Avoid unnecessary driving risks: It is important to assess risks when it comes to driving in extreme weather. For example, can you find something to eat at home rather than going out to eat?

  4. Learn how to drive in difficult conditions: If you absolutely must drive, it’s important to prepare yourself with the information you need to drive safely. For instance, when you hit a patch of black ice, remain calm and go with the skid, keeping the steering wheel straight. Braking and making sharp turns could lead to more dangerous skidding or spinning. Check out this document, which explains what black ice is, how to spot it, and how to handle it in more detail.

Auto Insurance Quotes

As you can imagine, driving in areas with extreme weather is riskier. So, what does that mean when it comes to insurance? Higher risk usually means higher premiums. If you live in a state that has severe winter weather, it is a reasonable expectation to pay more for your auto insurance. This means that you might want to be extra diligent when shopping for insurance. Shop around for companies that offer discounts, promotions, incentives for safe driving, etc. Insuravita can help!

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