As a Maryland car and truck accident attorney, I interact every day with persons injured in automobile accidents. Many of these traffic collisions are caused by operator error, driver inattention or distraction. Occassionally, poor road or weather conditions can result in single- or multi-car accidents. The latest snow storm that we all experienced made driving more than inconvenient for many Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. residents — at least one person died as a result of this storm.
Since bad weather almost always results in poor road and driving conditions, I always suggest to friend and family that they avoid going out in storms like the one we just had. Getting into a car or truck wreck because of slippery streets is always a possibility, which is something that happened to dozens of motorists this past week.
According to news articles, the winter storm that socked the East Coast stranded many motorists and caused numerous fender-bender crashes. Near blizzard conditions reportedly hit many residents of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states, slowing and even stopping travel throughout the region.
Highway crews in Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia sprayed brine on heavily traveled roads to help prevent snow and ice from sticking. The National Guard used Humvees to rescue stranded motorists in the Virginia area, while nearly 500 people moved into emergency shelters to keep warm after power outages caused furnaces to fail. At least one person was killed as a result of numerous traffic accidents.
Based on news reports, nearly two feet of snow fell in some areas, with parts of Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. experiencing blizzard conditions. Public transportation in the District of Columbia nearly ground to a halt, but it wasn’t enough to keep senators from staying in session to debate health care reform.
Eventually the slow-moving storm headed to the northeast but not before the mayors of Washington and Philadelphia declared snow emergencies while governors in both Virginia and West Virginia declared states of emergency.
Forecasters had said the storm system was expected to generate winds up to 35 miles per hour, which could cause near-whiteout conditions. It was thought that this could have been the most snow seen in the nation’s capital since February 2003, when nearly 27 inches of snow fell at Baltimore-Washington International Airport.
East Coast storm update: Snow causes thousands of accidents, knocks out power, strands motorists, Syracuse.com, December 19, 2009