Spring has officially arrived and it’s time to consider road safety. With longer days ahead, it’s time to give that car a wash, remove your vehicle’s winter tires and enjoy the milder spring weather.
We’re not entirely out of the woods quite yet though – considering British Columbia’s temperate rainforest climate, heavy rain can always creep up on us in the spring. Keeping your vehicle in tip-top shape for unforeseen weather is essential along with practicing safe driving habits.
Road Safety: Prepare Your Vehicle
With snow, ice and slush on the roads this past winter, you may have put extensive wear on your brake pads, wheels and or clutch. Take your vehicle in to your local trusted mechanic for a spring tune-up, where your vehicle’s essential fluids will be topped up, wheels changed/rotated, and any other replacements you may need for safe driving:
- Brake pads, fluids topped up and/or rotors replaced
- Tire rotation, change and or inflation
- Anti-freeze fluid replaced with coolant
- Battery check
- Oil filter change
- Clean windows and replace wiper blades
- Check all lights including headlights, taillights and brake lights, turn signal blinkers and parking lights.
Be Patient While Driving
Drivers must follow the posted speed limits on BC roads. However, with the warmer weather, drivers may become less cautious. Remember, just because the roads are clear of rain and ice does not mean roads are without potential hazards. Plan your route to prevent speeding, drop your speed when necessary and be aware of other drivers around you. Leaving a safe distance around your vehicle is the best way to keep safe while driving and ensure you plan your route ahead of time to prevent the urge to speed to your destination.
Watch Out for Pedestrians
With warmer weather, come more pedestrians, cyclists, and animals on the road. Remember what you learned in driving school: follow posted speed limits on highways, residential streets and in school zones. Always scan the intersection before passing through and stop at crosswalks — giving pedestrians the right of way. Blind spots are a significant hazard – cyclists and pedestrians may be out of view through your mirrors, so always make sure you shoulder check.
Share the Road – Road Safety Tips
As BC weather continues to improve, more cyclists will be commuting to work or for recreation. Keep in mind that cyclists in BC share the same rights and responsibilities as motorized vehicles.
- Keep a safe distance. Stay at least 1 meter away from a cyclist when passing and maintain at least 3 seconds behind a cyclist on the road.
- Don’t get distracted. Make eye contact with cyclists if you can and always keep a lookout – especially in densely populated areas
- Dooring can be deadly. According to ICBC, 1 in 14 vehicle collisions involving cyclists are the result of dooring. Always shoulder check — keeping an eye out for oncoming cyclists before opening vehicle doors.
- Yield to Cyclists Always signal in advance if you need to pull over or cross a bike lane, and of course, always yield to cyclists.
- Look Ahead You should always make a habit of shoulder checking for cyclists before turning right and keep an eye out for oncoming cyclists when turning left. Scan for cyclists before you enter a street from an alley or out of a spot where it’s difficult to see clearly. Stay cautious.
Watch Out for Wild Life – Road Safety
Spring is the time of year when wild animals begin foraging for food and may need to cross a busy roadway. Keep an eye out for any animal crossing signs, scan highways and roads for wildlife and reduce your speed if necessary. It’s important to note that animals are active all day and if you are about to hit an animal while behind the wheel, try to strike wildlife on an angle to prevent the animal from passing through your windshield.
Hurt In An Accident? Tim Louis Law Can Help
Tim Louis and his compassionate and talented legal team can give you the solid, trusted advice you need and can deal with ICBC on your behalf. If you or your loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident in Metro Vancouver and would like to consult with our legal team who will do everything they possibly can to get you the personal injury settlement you deserve, contact us today for a free consultation at 604-732-7678 or email firstname.lastname@example.org