A chain reaction crash, often called a pileup, is an accident that is certainly more likely in the snow. It happens when multiple drivers cannot stop in time, and the cars begin crashing into the backup.
For example, a pickup truck hits black ice and slides off of the road. The drivers behind all hit the brakes, which causes them to lose control on the ice – it’s usually not wise to hit your brakes when driving on ice, but people do it instinctively.
There’s often a reduced visibility aspect, as well. For instance, the drivers who are coming up behind the crash are driving in a whiteout, coming around a corner or over a hill. By the time they see all of the crashed cars ahead of them, they can’t stop in time. So what should you do?
Aim for the ditch
If you realize that you’re going to crash into the other vehicles, it’s usually best to intentionally drive off of the side of the road and into the ditch. In many cases, this is a much softer and less dangerous impact.
Stay in your car
After the crash, do not immediately get out of your car. Remember, other vehicles are probably going to slide into the back of yours. You may be fine in the car if this happens at low speeds, but you could be seriously injured or killed if you get out of your car.
Move to the side of the road
Eventually, you may determine that it’s safe to get out of your car. If you do, don’t stay in the middle of the pileup, examining the vehicle. Move over to the side of the road and wait for emergency services to arrive. Try to stand behind a barrier, such as a tree or a fence.
If you’ve been injured in an accident like this that was not your fault, make sure you know how to seek financial compensation for your medical bills.