There is more to summer than fun in the sun. With summer comes rainy days that are a disaster to drive in. In fact, according to the Department of Transportation, wet pavements cause about 950,000 vehicle crashes annually.
Those crashes result in about 352,221 injuries and 4,488 deaths.
Rain safety is too often overlooked.
So, to help you stay safe and keep your summer dedicated to fun in the sun, we’ve put together a list of 5 ways to stay safe while driving in the rain.
Rain Safety Tips
Texting and driving during clear skies is dangerous, so how would texting behind the wheel during rainy conditions be any better? It’s not. For your sake, and the sake of others around you, put down the phone and ignore the messages.
If you find yourself needing to answer, pull to the shoulder and put your car in park.
2. Lights and Wipers
With your lights on, it is easier for those behind you to see when you are braking and to adjust their speed accordingly, avoiding any accidents. Plus, it’s the law in many states to have headlights on whenever you have your windshield wipers on.
Using windshield wipers will help you see past the splotchy rain coating your window, allowing you to avoid crashing into someone else.
Use the tools at your disposal and keep yourself, and others safe.
3. Be in the Know
Make sure you remain aware of the weather conditions. Knowing that rain is likely to begin during your drive can help you accurately prepare.
Knowing the roads you will be driving on is also important. The pavement is not always going to be flawless, so if you know the bumps and potholes along your route, you are less likely to be surprised and caught off guard.
4. Stay Above Water
Depending on your location, flooding can be a real problem. Many roads are built so the middle is higher than the edges, so trying to stay near the middle of the road where water build up is less is a good idea.
Of course, you should always avoid driving in the rain whenever possible, especially if conditions call for flooding.
5. Slow Down and Back Off
Back off the person in front of you and slow down when conditions get bad.
When the roads get wet, friction is reduced between the tire and the road. That means that your tire’s usual grip on the road is diminished making it easier for you to lose control of the vehicle.
Because it’s easier lose control, it is even more necessary for you to remain farther behind the vehicle in front of you. This gives you enough reaction time in the event that something happens.
A good rule of thumb? Reduce your speed by about 1/3 whenever it is wet or rainy and remain about 5 seconds behind the person in front of you.
The summer time is meant to be for relaxation, so don’t let the perils of driving catch you unaware! So practice rain safety.
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