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Who is Responsible for Car Accidents Caused by Bad Weather?

Understanding Winter Accident Liability

It’s not a secret that Utah experiences heavy snowfall and ice during the winter, and those unfamiliar with driving in these conditions may pose a hazard to others on the road. When car accidents occur as a result of driving in these inclement weather conditions, many people may question whether liability shifts. Here’s what you need to know.

Drivers Have a Responsibility to Drive Safely

Although many places prone to snow have street cleaners that can make the roads easier to drive on, it is ultimately the drivers’ responsibility to adapt to whatever road conditions may be present at the time. Whether or not the weather significantly impacted stopping, turning, or other actions, getting behind the wheel when inexperienced in these conditions falls on the driver.

Utah Traction Laws

Drivers traveling through the canyons should be mindful of Utah’s traction laws that require snow tires or tire chains to be used in these areas starting as early as October. These laws may also be in place on other roadways throughout the state when the Utah Department of Transportation gives notice.

These requirements include:

  • All wheel or four wheel drive vehicles: M/S or M+S tires, 3PMSF tires, or snow chains
  • Passenger cars and light duty trucks: 3PMSF tires or snow chains/socks on all drive tires
  • Commercial vehicles: snow chains or socks on all drive tires
  • Drivers who fail to adhere to these laws and cause an accident by mishandling their vehicle in these conditions may be considered negligent.

Salt Lake City Car Accident Attorneys

The team at Steele Adams Hosman is dedicated to advocating for your right to a safe roadway, no matter the weather conditions that contributed to the collision. Drivers who are negligent in abiding by Utah’s traction laws should be held responsible for the damages they cause to others. If you or a loved one is injured in an accident during the snowy season, call (801) 999-1506 to schedule a consultation with a member of our team.