Many people worry about driving in the snow. They don’t trust themselves enough to maneuver their cars through the slushy and slippery mess. However, they should be just as concerned about driving in the rain as it too can be quite hazardous when you’re trying to drive. If you’re an inexperienced driver or if your tires aren’t quite up to standards, the rain can be just as treacherous as the snow or ice-covered roads can be. They say that the most dangerous time to drive in the rain is when it first starts, as the moisture is responsible for activating all the oils on the roads, thus making them a bit more slippery. It’s quite easy to lose control of your vehicle when taking a turn or if you have to stop short. By following some tips for driving on wet roads, you ensure a safe rain-soaked driving experience for yourself and others.
Tips for Wet Weather Driving
1. Wipers –Stay on top of the condition of your wiper blades. They’re the first line of defense when it comes to your visibility and wiper blades that are in bad condition are only going to decrease your field of vision. Your windshield wipers need to be in top condition at all times, but especially during the misty rain conditions. The fine misting rain should be easily cleared by your wiper blades, so if it isn’t, replace them ASAP.
2. Watch Your Speed –Don’t be one of the people who drives like there is ice on the road when it’s raining, but definitely keep an eye on your speed. Traveling at high rates of speed when the visibility is low is not a brilliant choice. Due to the oils on the road, stopping or slowing down efficiently may not be possible, so take it easy out there.
3. Stay Alert –Keep your eyes open and prepare for the worst when it’s raining outside. If you’re not paying attention you run a higher risk of not noticing when someone is slowing down in front of you. Keep your eyes on the road and if you see brake lights, slow down. Don’t allow the sound of the rain lull you into complacency. Put down your phone, stop messing with the radio, and try to tune out the kids. Minimize your distractions and focus.
4. Takes Turns Slowly –Turns and curves are the easiest way to lose control in rainy conditions. We don’t often think about how quickly we’re taking curves that we’re familiar with, so we think the rain isn’t going to make that much of a difference, but it does. Be cognizant of your speed when you’re going around a bend, whether you’re familiar with the curves or not.
5. Pull Off –If the rain is coming down in sheets and your visibility is shot, pull off to the side of the road. This is especially necessary when you’re not comfortable with your abilities. Rather than harm yourself or other drivers on the road, pull over if you can’t handle the conditions. You’ll find that you’re able to compose yourself and more likely than not, the rain will slow down quickly. If it doesn’t, slowly make your way back into traffic and proceed carefully. If you’re slowing down traffic, use your hazard lights.
The best advice for driving in rainy weather is to get comfortable with it. Force yourself to drive in all conditions so the adverse weather is unable to throw you off your driving game. The second best piece of advice is to relax. There is no need to rush, just get there safely.