According to Boston.com, a recent five-car accident in Springfield was attributed to fog. The accident occurred on St. James Avenue at around 9:00 PM on a Saturday evening in early December and resulted in three people being sent to the hospital. The accident was a serious one and first responders had to pry open the door of one of the cars using a mechanical device in order to remove one of the accident victims. In all, three people involved in the crash went to the hospital. No charges have been filed, and law enforcement indicated that fog was the cause of the five car pileup.
Our Watertown car accident attorneys are glad everyone involved in the crash survived the pileup. We know that fog can be an extremely dangerous condition that can lead to serious or even fatal auto accidents and we urge every driver to exercise extreme caution when driving under foggy conditions.
Driving in Fog
Fog typically occurs when a warm, humid mass of air meets a colder mass of air. When this occurs, water vapor in the air mass condenses too quickly and fog can form as a result. Fog can also occur when warm air is pushed by the wind across colder air, condensing into fog. In both cases, the actual fog is made up of tiny water droplets that form when evaporated water (dew or water in the humid air) meets the cold air and is cooled down. Fog, therefore, is essentially a cloud that forms but at ground level.
When fog forms, it can reduce the level of visibility on the roads significantly. In some cases, fog can reduce the visibility level to zero while in other cases, it can simply make it harder to see. Whenever there is fog, drivers need to exercise great caution to avoid an accident.
Tips for Safe Driving in Fog
The Weather Channel provides a number of helpful tips for how to drive safely in fog. These tips include:
- Driving using your lights on low beam. High beams make it harder to see by reflecting back off of the fog in the air.
- Reducing your speed. Driving slowly (sometimes slower than posted limits) is key when it is foggy. It is also important to watch your speedometer since the fog may give you the illusion that you are driving slowly even when you are going fast.
- Listening for traffic. If you open your windows and listen for cars, you may be able to identify traffic even if you can’t see it.
- Using your windshield wipers to increase visibility. Defrosters can also help make it easier to see.
- Watching painted road markings and the right edge of the road. These markings can serve as a guide to help you stay in your lane.
- Refraining from passing. Driving slowly and using extra caution is key when it is foggy.
- Refraining from stopping on heavily trafficked roads. Other drivers might be unable to see your vehicle as a result of the fog.
By following these tips, hopefully you can stay safe from fog accidents and avoid potentially injuring yourself or others.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a car accident, contact Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call (617) 777-7777.
Distracted Driving and Holiday Accident Fatalities, Boston Personal Injury Attorney Blog, December 3, 2012.