Driving while it’s raining is risky. Even moderate rainfall causes motor oils to hit the road, thus reducing the traction of your tires. Then, there is the human factor. The pouring rain affects how well the driver sees the road. To an extent, drivers lose focus as their mind wanders off to the many possibilities the rain may cause.
How Not to Drive When It’s Raining
According to the Association for Safe International Travel, over 2 million people suffer injuries from vehicular accidents. Among the causes is bad weather. Do not add to the growing statistics. Avoid the wrong ways of driving in the rain.
1. Driving Too Fast
Tire traction reduces when the road surface is wet. Lower your speed when traveling in the rain, especially on well-paved roads. Smoother surfaces tend to have less friction over rough surfaces.
As a rain safety tip, drive slightly under the speed limit. Be extra careful when traversing long, winding roads as you do not want your car to hydroplane.
At high speeds, you will likely lose control of the car, thus exposing you to an increased risk of an accident. Your chances of experiencing uncontrollable skidding are also high when you drive too fast and step on the brake abruptly.
2. Driving Near the Waysides
The center of the roads has the highest point. When rain pours, the water naturally goes to the sides. Because of this, you must avoid the sides of the road. Avoid driving through standing water, lest you get stuck.
Understandably, you want to get home fast. But for safety, avoid taking shortcuts and stay in the center of the road. It may require extra patience from you when there’s traffic. Plus, the lane is narrow. Nonetheless, waiting is better than waking up on a hospital bed.
3. Driving with Your Headlights Too Bright
Leaving your headlights turned off is as tragic as turning your headlights too bright. The last thing you want is to appear invisible when the environment is already gloomy, as another vehicle might drive right into you. Thus, part of the rain safety tips is to avoid driving when your car has broken headlights.
Likewise, bright headlights are also blinding. The brightness intensifies under the gloomy environment, affecting your visibility and that of other drivers. You do not want your bright car lights to cause accidents for other motorists.
Also, let your car breathe. Rain increases the humidity inside your car, causing the windshield to fog, reducing visibility. You can avoid this by slightly opening your window or turning off the heater.
4. Driving through Water
Crossing over a pool of water is not ideal. However, during heavy rains, running water is impossible to avoid and may cut across the road. If the water is visibly shallow and the car is large, then you can cross it like a turtle.
However, the case is different when the water is not moving. It is likely deep and may submerge your vehicle the instant you cross it.
Similarly, you must exercise caution and stop at a distance when you see that the water’s current is fast. You may get swept away by the water pressure.
5. Driving Too Close to Another Car
Traffic jam often happens during the rainy season. The long queue is a result of reduced speed and traffic diversion due to some flooded areas.
You may want to hurry and get to a safer place fast. As a result, you end up running too close to other motorists. But be a more conscious driver and avoid this kind of maneuver. Maintain a safe distance to avoid bumping into another vehicle.
6. Driving an Old Car
Well-maintained old cars may still run well and even pass through waters effortlessly. However, the risks are higher than when driving a new car.
The old motor may find it difficult to drive through flooded areas. Or it may suddenly break down in the middle of the road, causing a traffic jam. The windshield gets fogged. Glass windows deteriorate over time after all.
Here is what you can do when using an old car: Tune into weather forecasts. Check the tire, engine, wiper, headlights, windshield, among others. And when possible, bring it to a mechanic for preventive maintenance. Prioritize safety always.
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