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Winter can be a dangerous time for traffic accidents, especially if you are traveling to an area that gets snow and ice. In that case, the potential for slippery conditions with low visibility can make for a particularly treacherous drive.

Whatever the weather may be where you live, there are some precautions you can take to help ensure your safety and that of your family during winter driving. As on any other day, make sure to wear your seatbelt, and buckle children in safely to car seats. In addition, follow these tips to make winter driving safer:

Leave early. Leaving yourself enough time will help reduce stress and the likelihood that you will be tempted to speed. You may also be able to avoid the worst of the traffic.

Avoid drunk drivers. It goes without saying that you should not drink and drive yourself. If you can avoid the times and places where it is likely others could be drinking and driving, all the better.

Check the weather. If you can, avoid driving in inclement weather that could reduce your visibility or your traction. If possible, make sure your windshield wipers are in good working order. If you are driving to a colder climate, you may want to consider keeping a blanket, extra food and water, flares and other emergency items in your car.

Be rested before you drive. Especially if you will be driving a long distance, make sure you get enough rest so you do not suffer from drowsy driving — which can be just as bad as drunk driving in some circumstances.

If you do get in an accident over the winter, make sure to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney before accepting any settlement from an insurer.