Skip to main content

Tips For Driving In Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania state capitol building with recommended tips for driving safely and insured in Pennsylvania.

Our Personalized Tips & Knowledge For Pennsylvania Drivers & Drivers Going Through PA

Driving in Pennsylvania is an adventure! And so many people drive through Pennsylvania. While we do not hold the record for most miles put on our vehicles, and we are lucky to not be one of the top 10 most dangerous states to drive in, we do have a wide variety of people who drive through our state. Since Pennsylvania is the keystone state it is the connector to the northeast, or the southeast if you are driving in that direction. Due to our location, massive numbers of truck drivers, vacationers, and shipping companies pass through Pennsylvania. 

The high amount of traffic that travels through Pennsylvania resulted in a variety of driving factors. We will cover those, but first, we want to dive into the high-risk factors of driving in Pennsylvania. We want you to be safe before driving in Pennsylvania for the first time. Whether you are a new teen driver, or a first time PA visitor, below are important things to consider when driving in Pennsylvania.

The Higher Risk Factors Of Driving In Pennsylvania

There are a few factors that are extremely important to know before you drive into Pennsylvania or drive in PA for the first time. Some are surprising, but if you live in Pennsylvania, you know it is true! 

Look Out For Deer On Pennsylvania Roads

Pennsylvania is one of the top places for deer collisions on the road. According to studies the average chance of striking a deer throughout the entire United States is 1 in 116. In Pennsylvania, you have a 1 and 51 chance of hitting a deer. Pennsylvania is an extremely high-risk state for hitting a deer. While deer can be hit any time of the year, they are more active in the fall when they are in rut (Rut is a deer’s making season). If you are driving through or in Pennsylvania right after Thanksgiving you should also be on the lookout for deer crossing the road. The rifle hunting season in Pennsylvania begins after Thanksgiving and due to a large number of hunters in the woods, the deer population moves around Pennsylvania much more. Make sure you are prepared for what you should do when you hit a deer.

Ways You Can Prevent A Collision With A Deer In Pennsylvania

  • Morning & Evening Deer Activity: Deer are typically active in the early morning hours and late evening.
  • Drive Slower: Driving slower, can allow you more reaction time to brake and avoid hitting a deer.
  • High Beams: Turn on your high beams at night so you can see deer before they enter the road.
  • Braking: when breaking for deer be sure to not swerve off the road. It is better for you and for your insurance if you stay on the road.
  • If You’ve Seen One You’ve Seen Them All: if you see one deer be ready for more to appear. They typically travel in groups and do not recognize the danger of running out in front of you.
  • Look For Deer Crossing Signs: Luckily Pennsylvania is proactive in placing deer crossing signs at high traffic and highly populated areas.


Learn what you should do if you hit a deer here.

Pennsylvania Weather Is Detrimental To Driver Safety In Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has a wide variety of weather. Due to that, there can be higher driving risks during different seasons. Winter is undeniably the highest risk season in Pennsylvania, but we’ve broken down the four seasons and what to be prepared for when driving in Pennsylvania.

Winter Driving In Pennsylvania

Winter is undeniably the worst season to drive in Pennsylvania. According to MoneyGeek Pennsylvania has been ranked as the 2nd most dangerous state to drive in during the winter. Why is Pennsylvania so dangerous in the winter? You would expect a state that is located further north to have higher driving risks during the winter months. The reason Pennsylvania has such a high driving risk in the winter is not because of snow but because of ice. Since Pennsylvania’s location, snow is constantly freezing, melting, and refreezing, There’s a higher likelihood of ice being on the roads. Ice on the roads can cause more deadly accidents.

Spring Driving In Pennsylvania

Spring in our opinion is one of the lowest risk time frames to drive in Pennsylvania. The one thing that you should be aware of it’s flooding across roadways. We are located in Lebanon Pennsylvania and we have certain roadways that will flood and be covered regularly throughout the year. If you’re only using highways in Pennsylvania, you don’t have to worry as much since their drainage is well-maintained.

Summer Driving In Pennsylvania

Summer isn’t as high of a driving risk season in Pennsylvania. Things you must take into consideration is the risk of overheating. With larger highways and high traffic congestion, there is a likelihood of an accident. If your vehicle idols for a long amount of time or stuck behind an accident or in construction, it can overheat. Sometimes taking back roads and enjoying the scenery so air can flow through your engine and cool it down is better than sitting in idling on interstate 81.

Autumn Driving In Pennsylvania

During the fall months of Pennsylvania, there are beautiful leaves and great scenic rides you can take. But be aware as those leaves fall we can create slick roadway conditions. The thick foliage of Pennsylvania can cover roadways and lead to a slickness that is comparable to black ice. The leaves can also cover the drainage on major highways. Be aware of the potential of standing water in the passing lane when their leaves on the ground end it has recently rained.

Lower Risk Factors To Be Aware Of When Driving In Pennsylvania

Below are a few of the lower risk factors when driving in Pennsylvania. Well these are not as dangerous as the ones mentioned above, you’ll find them consistent throughout the year.

Potholes In Pennsylvania

There are a few reasons Pennsylvania has so many potholes. Pennsylvania has more roadways than any other state, so there’s more road to maintain. Pennsylvania also has a wide range of traffic traveling through the state on a regular basis. Those two factors combined with the sporadic weather patterns and constant freezing and refreezing of snow and ice on the road leads to a constant pothole problem. Typically when driving in Pennsylvania you can see the potholes ahead of time. Since roadways are also managed and fixed at the same time, if you hit one pothole there will probably be many more on that same road.

Construction Zones In Pennsylvania

Because of the constant wear and tear on Pennsylvania roads, they need to be maintained. Pennsylvania has a large number of construction zones throughout the year. Be sure to check the road ahead so you are not surprised by construction zones. Fines can also be extremely pricey in construction zones, so drive safely.

Tolls, Bridges, And Tunnels In Pennsylvania

If you are a newer driver you might not have driven over many bridges, through long tunnels, or experienced Pennsylvania’s tool system. While these are normal in other states, in Pennsylvania it is hard to drive anywhere without running into one of these three factors. Bridges are the most common thing you’ll run into in Pennsylvania. On the eastern side of PA, there are a large number of tunnels. Besides having an intricate toll system, there are usually toll checkpoints when entering Pennsylvania. It is normally a dollar to enter PA.

Get Pennsylvania Car Insurance From Strickler Insurance

Strickler insurance is located in Lebanon Pennsylvania and has been providing auto insurance since vehicles existed. Learn more about us in our history. We also provide insurance to many neighboring states, so don’t hesitate to contact us for a free insurance quote and all of your insurance needs.