Fall has definitely started, and that means the trees are about to turn into a riot of color all over Ohio. Leaf watchers are expected to be out in droves along many of the state’s most scenic — and rural — routes.
Whether you plan to drive out to one of the state’s best trails or you plan to just go for a drive to look at the fall foliage along the roads, take the time to brush up on your rural driving skills.
Keep this in mind: Almost 70% of fatal wrecks in Ohio are in rural areas
Most people are afraid of driving in the middle of congested city streets, but rural areas are actually far more dangerous. Many rural roads aren’t properly maintained, so they’re full of potholes or gravel patches. Steep hills and sharp curves are quite common. Hidden driveways are also a problem, as are numerous railway crossings that are unmarked.
With that in mind, remember to adjust your speed according to the weather and visibility. Keep your seat belts fastened, and don’t be in a hurry to pass any slow-moving farm equipment or trucks you encounter unless you have a clear view of the road.
Plus, remember this: It’s deer breeding season. Encounters with deer cause more and 22,000 wrecks every year in this state. You need to keep your eyes peeled for any wildlife along the roads you travel, particularly between sunset and midnight and just around dawn (which is when they’re most active). If you do encounter a deer in the road and you can’t stop in time to let it pass, it’s better not to take evasive action. You could cause your car to spin out and go over the guardrail on a hill or propel yourself into oncoming traffic.
Despite your best efforts, accidents may still happen. If you’re injured in a wreck due to another driver’s mistake, find out more about your right to compensation for your losses.