Extreme Weather Driving - Dos and Don'ts - BlogPh.net

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Extreme Weather Driving - Dos and Don'ts

Even under perfect driving conditions, there are many challenges for those who decide to hit the road. There is no way of gaping around the fact that the bad weather is bad news. The best scenario is to avoid driving altogether, but that is not always the option, is it? Well, taking precautions is essential when the severe weather arrives. As a general rule of thumb, keeping both hands on the wheel and attention glued to the road is the perquisite to driving safely. It also helps a great deal if you know what things to avoid and how to react when the winds are not in your favor.   

Winter’s Embrace

Winter brings a lot of snow on the roads, and bridges and overpasses freeze first. Therefore, figure out whether your car is prepared for the trials ahead, and equipped with the battery, antifreeze, wiper fluid, flashlight, emergency kit, etc. Note that the visibility is impaired in bad weather, which makes wipers and defrosters must-have tools. Apart from the equipment, put an effort to slow down and be careful when maneuvering. Drivers who cannot see properly are better of pulling over to the side than risking injury or worse.
So, do not change the direction or take turns suddenly. Avoid abrupt breaks, as this may lead to the loss of steering control. Maintaining it is easier under lower speeds, and antilock brakes work best with the constant pressure applied to the pedal. Finally, ending up in the snow is not the end of the road because accelerating slowly is a great way to get out. Do not make the mistake of just spinning tires and hoping for the best.

Risk of Rain

As with snow, the compromised visibility and slippery roads call for extra cautiousness. Using wipers during rainy weather is a no-brainer, but most drivers fail to replace them at least once a year. Furthermore, wet surfaces impede your ability to break and turn, especially right after the rain starts. Thus, make good use of headlights, keep your windows clean, and be patient. These three steps will take you a long way in ensuring safe travels and preventing the sliding and hydroplaning.
Extreme Weather Driving - Dos and Don'ts
Watch out for the weather
Moreover, many states make safety measures like keeping the headlights when the wipers are on obligatory. In any case, steer clear of flooded areas whenever possible, as there is no telling how deep they might be. Going around and finding alternative routes is always preferable, and lowers the risk of accident. At last, the tires should be properly inflated and examined for wear.

Fog and Wind

If the fog decides to join the bad weather party, do not forget to use low beams, regardless of the time of the day or night. Visibility is one of the most important conditions that affect driving performance, and heavy fog is an insurmountable obstacle sometimes. It is a treacherous companion, as it tricks you into thinking that you are going slower. Hence, consult the speed meter, and if necessary, turn on the emergency flashers and wait for the fog to disperse.  
Know that turning high beams is not advisable, as this is one of the myths related to the driving habits: These lights actually reduce the visibility in the fog. Keep the eyes open for flying debris and pay attention to the vehicles that carry cargo. Increasing the driving distance is a sound strategy, and if you have to drive slowly anyway, then there is no point breathing down someone’s neck. Also, do not drive trailer, van or any other high profile vehicle in high winds.

Riders of the Storm

When the Mother Nature decides to show its vicious side, it is best to stay off the roads. Getting struck by lighting is not something even the daredevils should muse on. Thunderstorms on the horizon announce that it is time to turn on the headlights and wipers, and when it comes to hailstorms, consider them a red alert. In the presence of such natural disasters, take cover under the bridge or try to find a safe structure.
If the situation goes from bad to worse, and you see the tornado approaching, then finding shelter and lying down is an absolute must. Never try to outrun the tornado or a hurricane, as this is not something that even top-notch drivers should attempt. It is better to be safe than sorry, especially when dealing with life-threatening situations.

Danger Signs

When it is raining cats and dogs, or the strong winds arise, the joy ride is just a distant thought.  Going out, however, is often a necessity. Getting caught in the poor weather conditions requires a special approach. Rain, snow, fog and winds make the driving, turning and stopping much harder, whether you are a seasoned driver or not. So, do not venture out unless there is no other choice. And when embarking on a dangerous journey, see to it that you are well-prepared and alert to the dangers ahead.

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