April 14, 2022 by Steven M. Gursten

A car accident in the rain is most often caused by a combination of bad weather conditions and unsafe driving. A driver is 34% more likely to be in a fatal crash during a rainstorm – and the risk more than doubles in a heavy downpour.

While we cannot do much about heavy downpours causing slick roads, most crashes during a rainstorm are still completely preventable. Most crashes are caused by driving too fast for road and weather conditions. An experienced auto accident attorney can help you and your family recover the compensation and damages you are legally entitled to if a serious injury results.

What causes a automobile crashes during a rainstorm?

A car accident in rain can be caused by an at-fault driver who is: (1) driving too fast for the weather conditions; (2) following too closely to be able to stop without hitting the car in front; (3) speeding; and (4) being overly cautious and, thus, driving too slowly.

The most common reason these crashes happen during a rain storm is due to an at-fault driver who is driving too fast for conditions. Unfortunately, too many drivers fail to adjust their speed when it rains, disregarding the law that requires a driver to drive “at a careful and prudent speed not greater than nor less than is reasonable and proper, having due regard to the . . . condition existing at the time.” (MCL 257.627(1))

Also, it is frequently the case that an at-fault driver who causes a crash during a rainstorm was following the victim’s vehicle too closely. Michigan law provides that a driver “shall not” drive “at a speed greater than that which will permit a stop within the assured, clear distance ahead.” (MCL 257.627(1))

Occasionally, it also happens that an at-fault driver causes a crash during a rainstorm because he or she overcompensated for the rainy road conditions and was driving too slowly. (MCL 257.627(8); 257.628(1) and (3))

What is the risk of being in a fatal crash during a rainstorm?

The risk of being in a fatal automobile crash increases by approximately 34% during active precipitation, according to climate and environmental research. During heavy precipitation, a driver is nearly 2.5 times as likely to be involved in a fatal crash.

How many car accidents are caused by rain?

In Michigan in 2020, 16,820 car accidents occurred under rainy weather conditions. In 2019, the number of rain-related car accidents in Michigan was 29,900. For 2018-2016, the number of r rain-related crashes in Michigan were 27,080, 31,190 and 24,810, respectively.

Can rain cause car accidents?

Rain doesn’t cause car accidents. Unsafe driving during a rainstorm is what causes automobile crashes. Frequently, at-fault drivers drive too fast for conditions when it is raining. Under heavy precipitation, a driver’s risk of being in a fatal accident is more than doubled.

Can I sue after a car accident in rain?

You may be able to sue for pain and suffering compensation if you were injured in a car accident in rain. However, the attorney you hire to represent you in a lawsuit will still need to prove that the at-fault driver was negligent and that your injuries have caused you to suffer a “serious impairment of body function,” which is the threshold test that all people who are injured in a car accident in Michigan must still meet under our auto No-Fault law.

Pain and suffering compensation may cover damages for:

  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Fright and shock
  • Inability to be with and socialize with family and friends
  • Embarrassment
  • Anxiety

“Serious impairment of body function” is the legal threshold under Michigan’s No-Fault auto law for pain and suffering compensation, which is also referred to as “noneconomic loss” damages.

Can I sue if I lost a loved one in a crash in a rainstorm?

If you lost a loved one in an automobile crash during a rainstorm, then you may be able to sue the at-fault driver for wrongful death, which would allow you and your family to recover damages for pain and suffering, loss of companionship and loss of financial support.

The wrongful death lawsuit must be brought by the personal representative of your loved one’s estate. A personal representative is set up in probate court to represent the estate in a car accident lawsuit for wrongful death.

Am I entitled to No-Fault benefits after a crash in a rainstorm?

When you have been injured in a car accident in rain, you are entitled to collect No-Fault PIP benefits from the responsible auto insurance company to help pay for your medical bills, lost wages, transportation costs for medical appointments, and attendant care services.

To ensure that you protect your rights to recover No-Fault benefits, you must file an application for No-Fault benefits – which is also called a “written notice of injury” – with the responsible auto insurance company within one (1) year after the overloaded truck accident. (MCL 500.3145(1) and (4))

Generally, the insurance company that is responsible for paying your No-Fault benefits will be your insurer or the insurer of your spouse or a relative living in your home. However, if no coverage is available through those sources, then you will need to apply for No-Fault benefits through the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan.

If you do not file your application on time, then the auto insurance company will use this to deny your claim and refuse to pay any and all of the No-Fault benefits you would have otherwise been entitled to.

Were you injured in an automobile crash during a rainstorm? Call a Michigan Auto Law attorney for a free consultation

If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident in rain and you have questions about your legal rights to pain and suffering compensation, economic damages and auto No-Fault insurance benefits, you can call toll free anytime 24/7 at (800) 777-0028 for a free consultation with one of our experienced car accident attorneys. You can also get help by visiting our contact page or you can use the chat feature on our website.

(Source: Michigan Traffic Crash Facts, Data Query Tool, Weather Conditions, 2016-2020, Rain)

Car Accident In Rain: What You Need To Know

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