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Houston Personal Injury Lawyer > Blog > Auto Accidents > Safe Driving in the Mountains

Safe Driving in the Mountains


Texas is home to more than 2,000 mountains, peaks, and hills, so if you live in the Lonestar State, chances are you’ll be driving on these types of roads at some point.

Mountain driving can be a challenge. You may be used to straight roads, but when you head toward the mountains, the roads get windy and narrow. You need to be prepared and alert or else you could be involved in a major crash.

Make your trip to the mountains a safe one. Here are some tips for driving in the higher elevations.

Use the Right Vehicle

You don’t want to take any old car to the mountains. An all-wheel drive vehicle with a lot of power, good tires, and reliable brakes is your best option, so leave your sports car or old beat-up truck at home. Some examples of vehicles that are well-suited for mountain driving include the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Honda CRV, Subaru Outback, Land Rover Range Rover, and Toyota Tacoma.

Know How to Use an Automatic Transmission

Most vehicles nowadays have an automatic transmission, so know how to best use it on twisty roads. Pay attention to the car’s performance. Monitor the engine’s temperature. Pull over to let it cool down if it gets too hot. Manually downshift if your vehicle struggles to maintain speed. This gives the engine more power when climbing.

Use a low gear, such as L and 2 with an automatic. This gives you power and speed when going uphill, and reduces stress on the brakes and transmission when going downhill. You should not rely on your brakes to do all the work when going downhill, as this can cause them to overheat.

Take it Slow

Don’t be speeding in unfamiliar terrain. Mountain roads are known for debris in the road, such as rocks and fallen trees. Plus, wildlife such as deer and bears may appear on the road unexpectedly. Keep extra space between you and the vehicle in front of you and be prepared to stop at any time.

Be Careful at Night

Driving on a mountain road at night adds another layer of complexity. Visibility is reduced, so you need to slow down and be extra alert, especially if you’re not familiar with the road. Use high beams when you can.

Come Prepared

With any type of trip outside of your ordinary commute, you should be prepared. At the very least, you should bring with you water, snacks, a flashlight, and a first aid kit. If you’re not sure where you’re going, bring a paper map with you in case cell phone service is spotty. Check the weather before heading out and expect delays if conditions get too extreme. Don’t risk driving if it is unsafe; your safety is most important.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer

Mountain driving can be treacherous. The twists and turns can be hard to navigate, making accidents more common.

In a crash? Make sure you have a Houston car accident attorney from The West Law Office, PLLC on your side. We’ll give your case the attention it deserves. To schedule a free consultation, fill out the online form or call 281-347-3247.



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