Fall weather could increase your risk of a serious car crash

There are a lot of great things about Autumn. There's the annual influx of pumpkin spice products, if you enjoy that flavor. There's the crisp, cool air, which is so refreshing after a hot Ohio summer. There's the spooky fun of Halloween and preparation for the holiday season. There's also a major drawback to fall, because it can cause conditions that could result in a serious motor vehicle accident.

Most Ohio drivers understand the seasonal risks associated with winter driving and even the potential risks of the rainy weather in spring. For one reason or another, many people tend to overlook the potential for weather-related car crashes in the fall. Taking the time to familiarize yourself with the risks can improve your chances of avoiding a collision.

Fall rain and fog cause slippery conditions

The cooler temperatures in autumn lend themselves to increased precipitation when compared with the summer. Extra rain can mean that the roads themselves are wet, which can increase your stopping times and also the risk of a crash when you're behind the wheel.

There's also the additional risk of foggy mornings. Dropping overnight temperatures can result in massive fog banks, which can significantly reduce visibility when you're on the way to work or taking your kids into school. While it may burn off as the sun rises, early drivers will have to prepare for both decreased visibility and increased slipperiness associated with fog.

Changing leaves create a crash risk double whammy

The beautiful colors of fall are both a blessing and a curse. Homeowners may bemoan the effort it takes to remove falling leaves, while just about everyone else is hoping to soak up as much of that color as possible.

Unfortunately, this can lead to a lot of traffic, particularly in the evenings and on the weekends, with drivers who are focused on nearby trees and not the roads. Any kind of distraction is dangerous and increases the risk of a crash. Leaves can be a beautiful distraction for many in the fall.

Even worse, the leaves themselves can pose a direct physical risk to vehicles. They tend to accumulate in the streets, particularly on city roads and country lanes. When they are wet, that increases the risk of losing traction in your vehicle. Even if they are dry, they can still cover other problems in the road, such as broken glass or even major potholes. Those hidden dangers can quickly lead to someone losing control over a vehicle.

The best way to ensure you're safe on fall roads is to slow down, be aware of weather conditions and watch out for other drivers. Plan to leave a little early, especially if you're taking country roads or traveling after or during fog or rain.

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