It is supposed to get up into the 40s around Houston today. As cold as that is, it’s likely to be greeted as welcome relief after temperatures dipped below freezing overnight. It’s been so cold lately that schools in the region have closed or started late in recent days. Concern about ice on the roads even prompted local officials to close down High Occupancy Vehicle lanes for the morning commute this morning.

When weather conditions get this severe, road conditions can become hazardous. Unfortunately, a lot of drivers may lack experience dealing with the changes.

Car accidents that result in injury and death might seem to be unavoidable in such circumstances. But they can be avoided if proper care and caution is exercised. When it isn’t, victims have a right to seek compensation from the responsible party for their suffering, loss and expenses.

Proper caution does not seem to have been exercised in a single vehicle crash last night in Houston. Police say the driver at the wheel of the vehicle was speeding on Gulf Bank Road near Bauman Road at about midnight.

It’s not clear whether the cold weather created icy conditions that might have contributed to the situation, but authorities say the driver lost control. The vehicle struck a curb and then skidded off the road and collided with a utility pole. The force of the crash was so great that it broke the pole in two.

Authorities declared the driver dead at the scene. A female passenger in the vehicle was seriously injured and was taken to Ben Taub Hospital. She’s reported to be in critical condition today.

Source: KHOU-TV, “Police: Speeding driver killed, passenger injured in north Houston crash,” Jan. 29, 2014