Portland winters often compete with Portland drivers. The typically warm and mild weather from summer and fall has an expiration date as winter rolls in, with its frequent rain showers, icy roads, and even snow. These weather conditions don’t make driving easy, and cause the road to become unpredictable, which the Portland lawyers at DuBois Law Group note as a major cause of annual car accidents. This blog aims to help you understand the weather’s capabilities, and help you come prepared to the road, whether you’re still driving or searching for alternatives ways to travel.
Portland’s rainfall can create dangerous driving conditions. Whether that’s less predictable car control, reduced traction on your tires to the road, or impaired visibility, driving in stormy weather can take a lot of skill and control that the weather sometimes won’t allow, even to the most experienced drivers.
Fiedler Deutsch, LLP, a distinguished injury law firm, notes that accidents of any type are not only pain inflicting, but also financially devastating. Many personal injury victims are left with thousands of dollars in medical expenses and need long-term, customized treatment. Here are some vehicle maintenance tips to ensure your vehicle is cooperating as best as it can against the rainfall:
- Check that your wipers are working. Check for signs of damage to your wipers.
- Test your defroster.
- Do a break check.
- Check that your tires are in good shape (this can help you prevent hydroplaning).
- Check your headlights and high beams if you’re driving at night.
According to the State of Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries,”Landslides are a common chronic problem in Oregon, especially in places with or near moderate to steep slopes, during times of heavy precipitation, and during earthquakes.” And, if there’s anything that Portland doesn’t have a shortage of, it’s rain, and with all of the rain that falls in Portland and the surrounding areas, landslides are a real threat to drivers on the road. Especially in less urbanized or mountainous areas, landslides can occur quickly, without warning, and can be deadly depending on their severity, as large amounts of sediment spill from the hillsides and over the roads that many driver’s frequent.
During the winter months, another threat to Portland driver’s are icy road conditions. Dangerous for anyone with or without the proper equipment, if you find yourself unprepared, it can be a recipe for disaster. As noted by The Zebra, nearly 2,000 deaths and 135,000 injuries are the result of car accidents due to icy roads each year, including states where snow and ice are common annually. So, it’s clear that even if experienced while driving on ice, it remains highly dangerous and unpredictable, especially for the every-day Portland motorist.
Portland’s Alternative Travel Options During Winter
If taking on bad weather in a car is just not your speed, there are alternatives to driving through public transportation. Here’s what Portland has to offer:
- Plan your trip using Get There Oregon. With this resource, you can plug in where you want to go, and the site shows you all the ways to get there. You can compare types of travel, or even find a carpool.
- Take the train or a bus. Amtrak Cascades train and Cascades POINT bus offer routes from Eugene, Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver.
- If you don’t live in the city, POINT intercity buses service all over the state. There should be an access point close to you, no matter where you live or where you’re trying to go.
- Not sure what the weather’s going to be like? Use TripCheck, a travel information site for up-to-date-travel conditions.