While winter weather brings out the best of Montana – with skiing, sledding, snowshoeing, and hunting; winter weather increases the number of motor vehicle accidents substantially. Some winter weather accidents can be minor, with a small dent in the vehicle. Others, unfortunately, can end in serious injury or even death.
But who is at fault for these accidents?
Accidents that occur due to snow, ice, or visibility issues involve multiple vehicles and bad injuries. That results in a number of different auto policies and investigations, a headache for all involved, and a significant time lapse.
Most people want to know whether or not their insurance will pay for damages. If another vehicle slid on snow or ice and hit you, you may be able to recover financially through your own insurance company (medical payments coverage) or the other driver’s liability coverage.
What if you hit someone because of the weather conditions?
Many people are surprised to discover that they are still at fault if they cause a car accident during a snowstorm, are involved in a collision on icy roads or are involved in a black ice accident. In that case, your own liability insurance should pay for the other driver’s damages, even if the weather was technically to blame. You cannot blame the weather for an accident to avoid liability. Drivers have a duty to drive safely and appropriately no matter what the conditions.
Every driver must act with due care depending on the conditions of the roadway. So if a driver loses control of their vehicle and causes a collision with your vehicle, the person who caused the accident can be held responsible. Why? Because a reasonable person would know that if it is snowing and the roads are icy they should take extra care when driving by traveling at a slower speed and at a greater following distance.
What to do after a winter accident?
If Billings is under a slick street policy, read more here: https://www.ktvq.com/sponsored/edmiston-colton-law-firm/2018/12/13/what-you-need-to-know-about-billings-police-departments-slick-streets-policy/
If Billings is not under a slick street policy or the accident occurs outside of Billings, read more here:
If you have been injured in an auto accident that took place on an icy road or under snowy conditions, you have legal rights and you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and damage to your vehicle. Contact Edmiston & Colton Law Firm at (406) 259-9986 to get your questions answered and your legal options explained. For more information, visit www.yellowstonelaw.com or call (406) 259-9986.