Wet Driving Tips
1. Routinely check your tyres
Before you hit the road always ensure that the following routine maintenance is done:
2. Slow Down
As the rain falls, it mixes with grime and oil on the road creating slippery conditions that promote skidding. The best way to avoid skidding is to slow down and drive at a slower pace that allows more of the tyre's tread to make contact with the road therefore, attaining better traction.
3. Know how to recover from a skid
Skids can happen even to the most cautious drivers. If your car does skid, remember not to slam on the brakes. Do not pump the brakes if you have an anti-lock braking system (ABS). Instead, apply firm but steady pressure to the brakes and steer the car in the direction of the skid.
4. Keep your distance from the car ahead
Wet-weather driving demands proper judgment with the use of all the main controls - steering, clutch, brake and accelerator. When you journey in the rain, your shoes will be wet and you can easily slip off the pedals. Always scuff the sole of your shoes on the rubber matting or carpeting of the car before you start the engine. All motorists should regularly check that their headlights, rear lights, brake lights and turn indicators are working properly. It takes about three times longer to brake on wet roads than it does on dry roads as more distance is required to brake. It is important not to tailgate always keep more than two car lengths between you and the vehicle in front of you.
5. Drive in the tracks of a car ahead of you
Avoid using your brakes. Whenever possible, slow down by taking your foot off the accelerator. Turn your headlights on, even in a light rain. Not only do they help you see the road, but they'll help other drivers see to you.
6. Learn how to avoid and deal with aquaplaning
Aquaplaning happens when the water in front of your tyres builds up faster than your car's weight can push it out of the way. The water pressure causes your car to rise up and slide on a thin layer of water between your tyres and the road. At this point, your car can be completely out of contact with the road, and you are in danger of skidding or drifting out of your lane, or even off the road. To avoid aquaplaning, keep your tyres properly inflated, maintain good tread on your tyres and replace them when necessary, slow down when roads are wet, and stay away from puddles. Try to drive in the tyre tracks left by the cars in front of you. If you find yourself aquaplaning, do not brake or turn suddenly. This could throw your car into a skid. Ease your foot off the accelerator until the car slows and you can feel the road again. If you need to brake, do so gently with light pumping actions. If your car has ABS, then brake normally; the car's computer will mimic a pumping action, when necessary.
7. If the rain becomes too heavy, stop!
Heavy rain can overload the wiper blades, allowing an almost continuous sheet of water to flow over the screen. When visibility is so limited that the edges of the road or other vehicles cannot be seen at a safe distance, it is time to pull over and wait for the rain to subdue. Stop at rest and protected areas. If the roadside is your only option, pull off as far as possible and wait until the storm passes. Keep your headlights on and turn on your hazard warning lights to alert other drivers.
8. Dry your brakes after driving through standing water.
If you have driven through standing water deep enough to get your brake shoes wet, apply the brakes lightly to dry them.
9. Don't drive while fatigued.
Stop at least every couple of hours or every hundred miles to rest.