The days before Thanksgiving are widely known as the busiest travels days of the year, as Americans take to airports, roadways and train stations to get home to their families. In a stroke of bad luck, winter storms are threatening to hit Northeastern states and delay travel plans throughout the country. Auto accident attorneys at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm warn that drivers, particularly in the Northeast, will be encountering the most problems this holiday season.
Those traveling by air will want to keep track of the brewing storm as well, as delays and cancellations on the East coast affect flights throughout the country. Unfortunately, many of the major Northeast airports – Philadelphia, New York, Newark and Washington D.C – are in the storm’s path and hubs for some of the busiest airlines. New York and Philadelphia are expected to bear the brunt of the storm, with Washington D.C. in a close third. Since United Airlines has hubs in both D.C. and Newark, that airline may be particularly affected.
Other airlines most likely to be affected are U.S. Airways (with its hub in Philly) and American, Delta, and JetBlue, which all have hubs at New York’s JFK airport. This could impact flights throughout the country as delays and cancellations proliferate, affecting connecting flights into the Midwest and West Coast. A flight going from JFK to Chicago could be delayed, which would then delay the connecting flight from Chicago to Seattle, for example.
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Many experts are predicting that drivers will be most negatively affected, however, with the biggest impact on drivers west of large East Coast cities. With more ice, snow and sleet still to come, Time Magazine predicts the storm will affect over 58 million Americans this year, most of whom travelling on roadways.
Some of the biggest problems may be related to the severe winds throughout the lower Great Lakes and Ohio Valleys. Winds often get mixed in with precipitation, hindering vision and making roadways slippery and unpredictable. There have already been at least ten deaths reported from auto accidents caused by adverse weather conditions.
Those traveling on roadways are urged to take extreme caution while driving and always keep and emergency kit in your vehicle. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) recommends keeping the following items in your vehicle safety kit at all times:
- Jumper cables
- Flares or reflectors
- Small ice scraper
- Traction material
- Windshield washer fluid
- Non-perishable food
- First aid kit
Each state’s department of transportation has a website devoted to winter road conditions, where updates are posted regarding travel information and road closures. That website for Illinois is www.gettingaroundillinois.com, where motorists should click on the “winter road conditions” icon.
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Auto accident attorneys have been working with victims of winter road conditions and their families for over two decades. If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a car, truck, motorcycle or bicycle accident caused by the negligence of another, contact our firm today. We offer free legal consultations to potential clients in all 50 states, and have our own team of investigators who can come to you and help guide you through the process of filing a legal claim.