TAKE EXTRA PRECAUTIONS WHEN TRAVELING THROUGH SNOW AND ICE FILLED INTERSECTIONS
MLive’s Chief Meteorologist Mark Torregrossa recently compiled a list of Michigan’s most dangerous intersections when snow and ice are present. He used accident reports from the Michigan State Police dating 2012 – 2016. Ice, snow, wind and below-freezing temperatures often combine to make winter weather driving a difficult undertaking.
Intersections in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo
The second most dangerous intersection had 65 crashes at 9th Street and Stadium Drive in Oshtemo Township near Kalamazoo.
The intersection of 44th Street SW and Byron Center Avenue SW in Wyoming, Michigan landed in the third more dangerous intersection with 57 total crashes when snow, ice, or slush were on the roadways.
Torregrossa mentions “while the data shows the frequency of crashes during winter conditions, it doesn’t indicate the cause of the crash.” The list also didn’t factor how much traffic the intersection normally has at different times of the day.
LISTING OF TOP INTERSECTION CRASH SITES IN MICHIGAN
- East Broomfield Road at South Isabella Road in Mount Pleasant
- Ford Road at Lilley Road in Canton Township in Wayne County
- Eastbound I-94 at Pipestone Road in Benton Township, near Benton Harbor
- Barlow Street at Lafranier Road in Grand Traverse County’s Garfield Township
- 56th Street SW at Byron Center Avenue SW in Wyoming
- 6 mile Road at Beck Road near Northville in Wayne County.
- South Drake at Stadium Drive in Kalamazoo
- Lake Michigan Drive NW at Wilson Avenue NW in Walker
- 3 Mile Road at South Airport Road in East Bay Township (Traverse City area)
- Memorial Road at Sharon Avenue W in Houghton
- 44th Street SW at Clyde Park Avenue SW in Wyoming
- Douglas Avenue at River Avenue in Holland Township in Ottawa County
- East Jolly Road at South Cedar Street in Lansing
- Sashabaw Road at Waldon Road near Clarkston and DTE Energy Music
- 36th Street SE at South Division Avenue SW in Wyoming in Kent County
- Grand Rapids at 28th Street SE at Breton Road
- Mount Pleasant at East Broomfield Road at South Mission Road
- Traverse City at South Division Street and Silver Lake Road
- Traverse City at North Division Street and West Front Street
- Houghton at Brickyard Lane and Memorial Road
- South Airport and Garfield Road in Garfield Township
- Flint where I-475 meets Grand Traverse Street
- 3 Mile Road at U.S. 31 in East Bay Township
- U.S. 31 at South Airport Road in Garfield Township
- 44th Street SE at Breton Road SE in Grand Rapids
- Drake Road at K L Avenue in Kalamazoo
- Howard Street at Stadium Drive in Kalamazoo
TOP 3 INTERSECTIONS WHERE CRASHES OCCURRED DUE TO WEATHER
- 44th Street SW and Byron Center Avenue SW in Wyoming, MI
- 9th Street at Stadium Drive in Oshtemo Township near Kalamazoo’
- 44th Street SE at Eastern Avenue in Grand Rapids
You can review Torregrossa’s full findings in a slideshow here.
SAFE DRIVING ON SNOW, ICE, & SLUSH
Although most Michigan drivers are seasoned pros when it comes to operating a motor vehicle in inclement weather, accidents still happen and fatalities from crashes are on the rise. In fact, AAA Michigan reports that winter related driving conditions play a major role in most crash fatalities. Michigan also often has the highest yearly average of winter weather-related accidents.
Experts agree that to avoid being involved in an accident you should drive slower, as snow and ice can significantly reduce tire traction on the roads. Remember to stay back and not follow too close. This means increasing the following distances to a 5-6 second minimum. Be sure to accelerate and decelerate slowly in order to avoid skidding.
ADDITIONAL TIPS TO WINTER DRIVING
The Michigan Department of Transportation urges drivers to do their part and follow these simple steps when driving in winter weather:
- Always wear a safety belt when in a vehicle, and be sure children are properly buckled as well
- Slow down when visibility is low and/or when road conditions are snowy or icy – in Ice and Snow Take it Slow!
- Give snowplow drivers plenty of room to plow and salt/sand the roads – Snowplows Need Room to Groom!
- Be extra cautious on bridges because they can be icy when roadways are dry
- Accelerate and brake slowly and avoid abrupt steering maneuvers, especially when merging or changing lanes
- Don’t pump anti-lock brakes
- Don’t use cruise control when roads are icy
- Remember, don’t text and talk while driving
Other things to think about while driving in winter weather:
Treacherous Temps: Once temperatures get down into the teens, salt can be ineffective. This is because salt takes longer to work, and refreezes at a much faster rate when temperatures fall below 20 degrees. As a result, driving on road surfaces that have been salted can be more dangerous than driving on roads that have been plowed, but not salted.
Watch the Slush: Look at the slush being thrown by passing vehicles. If slush is thrown to the side of the wheels and splashing, the salt is still working. If the slush begins to stiffen and is thrown directly behind the wheels, the salt is losing effectiveness and icy conditions may begin to develop.
Regardless of the cause, victims of car accidents are entitled to Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits, also known as first-party benefits, under the Michigan No-Fault Law. These benefits cover reasonably necessary medical expenses related to the accident, up to three years of lost wages, replacement services (to cover household chores or childcare the victim can no longer complete), attendant care such as in-home nursing, medical mileage, out-of-pocket medical costs, and vehicle and/or home modifications.
Working with insurance companies to ensure you get the compensation you deserve can be frustrating and confusing. The Law Offices of Lee Steinberg can help. Please call Lee Free and speak to our car accident attorneys at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733) or fill out the Free Case Evaluation Form. And remember, you pay nothing until we settle your car accident case.