Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Avoiding Rain-induced Car Mishaps on the Road

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Time and again, the government has been making repeated calls for motorists to be very careful when out on the road driving. Just last year, excessive rains in the Southern California have caused multiple accidents. The drivers and victims of these vehicles may have already talked with a Los Angeles car accident attorney for insurance claims.

These accidents were due to the continuous rains that happened in the SoCal area last year. As it is, rains can cause the roads to be slippery. Water on roads cause hydroplaning that leaves a vehicle with little or no grip at all.

This consequently leads to loss of traction and ultimately accidents. So does this mean that one has to stop driving when it is raining? Of course not! All you have to do is follow these very useful tips that will let you drive through the most torrential downpours minus the accidents.
  • Slow down. When the roads are wet, chances are it is more difficult to put the vehicle to a stop. Driving slowly gives you more time to slow your vehicle down, helping you avoid mishaps.
  • Stay in the middle lanes. Rainwater tends to pool on the road’s outer lanes. This lessens the chances of your vehicle hydroplaning.
  • Give enough driving distance to the vehicle in front of you. This gives you more time to react, slow down, and steer your vehicle away from accidents.
  • Try to drive on the tracks of the vehicle ahead of you. These tracks have probably less water, enabling you to enjoy much grip.
  • Stop tailgating. It doesn’t only give you less time to react when the vehicle in front of you suddenly slows down. The water mists from the vehicle in front of you impairs your vision.
  • Be alert. Watch out for brake lights and other things on the road. This lets you do the right things that needed when emergency situations arise.
  • Employ engine braking. Take your foot off the accelerator to slow down instead of using the brakes. Brakes can lock up your wheels, causing you to lose grip. If you need to slow down, use the brakes with minimal braking force.
  • Turn your headlights, fog lights, and/or the hazard lamps when raining. This increases your visibility on the road, letting you steer away from road hazards and helps others avoid you.
  • Never drive through water if you can’t see the ground through it. If it is moving, your car could be swept. If it is not, your vehicle might stall.

The thing is these accidents could have been avoided if the drivers have only exercised proper driving habits. Officer Adam Eggleston of the California Highway Patrol (CHP), in an interview with the ABC said that “we believe it was just the rain” and warned drivers to “really reduce speed”. So follow the above-mentioned tips to ensure your safety when driving through the heaviest of downpours.


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