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Spring brings a drop in Montana car accidents

After a long cold winter, Montana residents can probably think of a lot of reasons to welcome spring. But here's one many may not have thought of: your chances of being in a car accident are lower at this time of year.

Not surprisingly, winter is one of the worst times for car accidents. The odds of being in an auto accident go up whenever there is snow and ice on the roads. According to Helena's assistant police chief, that city has seen more than 100 accidents in a day when the roads are icy. In contrast, about four accidents are reported per day in the springtime.

Summer also sees an increase in auto accidents. One likely reason is that with the warmer weather more people are out and about. With increased congestion come more accidents.

The time of day is also a factor. According to Helena's assistant chief, the four to six p.m. time frame is probably the busiest for auto wrecks. Congestion is probably the culprit here also, as the roads are full of people anxious to get home from work.

Of course, the time and season are not the only factors that influence accident rates. Most accidents are caused by a negligent driver. Negligence is simply the failure to act with reasonable care. The law provides that when a negligent driver causes injury to another, the victim has the right to sue for damages including medical expenses and pain and suffering.

At this time of year, a person who has suffered a serious injury in a car accident probably can't blame the season. An experienced personal injury attorney can help a victim evaluate whether they have a viable claim.

Source: Beartooth NBC, "Spring lull in car accidents," Luba Solonenko, April 19, 2013

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