If you’re going out in the car or you’re getting on your bike in the winter, you should be aware of potential hazards on the road. When you’re driving in wet, icy or snowy conditions, the road surfaces may be slippery, your visibility may be reduced, and your stopping distance will increase. Another hazard you may not be aware of is road grit. We tend to think of road grit as something that makes the streets safer, but it’s wise to be wary of the dangers of road grit.
What are the dangers of road grit?
If you’re a car driver, you may have noticed that the surface of the road appears bumpy and rough when the gritters have been out. Grit is put down to prevent road accidents when ice or snow is forecast. It can make the surface of the road less slippery, and give you more traction. Most cars will be fine on major roads where grit has been laid if it snows or the roads are icy. However, there are dangers of road grit for cyclists and motorcyclists. If you catch a piece of grit on your wheel or you happen to hit larger pieces at an angle, it can affect your steering, your balance, and your stability and put you at risk of a bike accident. There’s also a risk of damage to the bike, which occurs when grit and dirt become trapped.
If you are a driver, and you’re following a gritter, stay well back and give the vehicle plenty of time and space. If you follow too closely, you run the risk of pieces of grit flying up onto your windscreen, and there is a risk of chips.
Staying safe on icy roads
If you’re driving or cycling in icy conditions, take extra care to avoid collisions. Pay attention to the speed limits, and give vehicles around you plenty of leeway. Adjust your stopping distance, and use your lights. Slow down in dangerous conditions, and be prepared to pull over in a safe place if you can’t maintain safe control of the vehicle. If terrible conditions are forecast, think about whether your journey is essential. Driving in bad weather will increase your risk of being involved in a road traffic accident.
If you’ve been injured in a car crash, or you’ve been involved in a cycling accident, and you would like to find out about claiming compensation for a road accident, call Accident Advice Helpline on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile.
Date Published: February 20, 2017
Author: Accident Advice