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Headed for a fall

With the beginning of October, a chill in the air returns to Pennsylvania. The days grow shorter, and the number of risks that drivers face increase. As you drive in and around Chambersburg, you need to remember that the long days of summer, with dry payment and ample daylight are gone, and you need to readjust your driving habits.

Fall driving hazards range from sunrise or sunset blinding your commute to work, to the risk of frost on a bridge deck or shady stretch of road contributing to a motor vehicle accident. During the summer, the sun is typically high in the sky on your way in to work or when heading home.

After the equinox, the sun can be resting on the horizon near sunset, blinding your vision of the road and other drivers. You should keep sunglasses at the ready and make sure your sun visor is functional.

You also should remember to leave extra distance between your car and the one you are following, as traffic can experience seemingly inexplicable slowdowns that can be related to the sun impairing other driver’s visibility and causing them to suddenly slow.

Rear end car accidents can be all too easy caused by following too closely and not have sufficient room to stop, should brake lights suddenly appear.

Other risks include foggy weather, and remember that those beautiful fall colors mean leaves will soon be on the ground. And on road surfaces, and when wet those leaves on a curvy Pennsylvania country road can be as slippery as snow and ice.

They may even be potentially more dangerous, you may not realize until it is too late, and on a curve such a mistake could have disastrous consequences.

Next time, we will look at other fall driving risks.

Justdrivepa.org, “Fall Driving,” accessed October 6, 2014

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