Of all the icy roadway conditions you may experience during the winter months, one of the most infamous and difficult to avoid is likely black ice. The term black ice has nothing to do with the actual color or composition of the ice, but instead reflects the fact that it is entirely transparent and frequently indistinguishable from the pavement on which it rests.
Black ice is typically a thin accumulated layer of frozen water, distinguishing it from more familiar winter road conditions such as compacted snow, thick crusts of ice, or refrozen slush. All of these conditions are significantly less dangerous to an experienced driver, as their ease of detection allows drivers to appropriately modify their behavior.
Avoiding Black Ice
Black ice is difficult to detect, but following these tips can help you to anticipate its presence before you unexpectedly lose control of your vehicle:
- Know what conditions cause black ice. Early mornings after a freezing night combined with light precipitation are the most likely conditions in which black ice may form.
- Beware of bridges. Ice quickly and easily forms on bridges because the pavement is exposed to the elements both above and below, allowing it to become cold enough for ice to stick much more quickly than it does elsewhere on the road.
- Be ready for anything. When driving in conditions that you know to be conducive to the formation of black ice, take actions such as reducing your speed and increasing your following distance to help prevent an accident should you lose control of your vehicle.
While following these easy tips will help to keep you safe on the road, there is no guarantee that other drivers will do the same, and accidents are bound to happen.
If you have suffered an injury in a car accident involving black ice, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses and other damages. Contact the experienced and knowledgeable Des Moines car accident attorneys of LaMarca Law Group, P.C., by calling (515) 705-0233 to discuss the potential merits of your case.