Nearly 24 percent of all automobile accidents can be attributed to bad weather conditions such as rain, ice, and snow. Other research studies show that most drivers never account for adverse driving conditions such as rain. Thus, accidents caused by driving in the rain account for nearly 7,400 deaths and over 670,000 auto accident injuries.
It is common for rain to cause many problems on our roadways and highways that result in slippery driving conditions. Typically when it begins to rain, drivers will either slow down too much or not enough. As we may know, heavy rain greatly impacts a driver’s visibility, friction to the pavement, speed of travel, driving distance, and vehicle performance. Thus, we must remember to slow our speed and allow more distance between the automobile you are traveling behind.
Heavy Rain Driving Tips
While driving in heavy rain, we must drive with an increased amount of caution as our reaction time is significantly different than driving in normal conditions. It is recommended to maintain a high level of attention and abide by all traffic laws during adverse weather conditions. At The Eichholz Law Firm, we have created a list of heavy rain driving tips to keep members of our community safe during heavy rain.
A few heavy rain driving tips include:
- Vehicle maintenance – Performing routine vehicle maintenance will keep you safe in any conditions; however certain parts of your vehicle should be properly maintained to keep you safe during adverse weather conditions.
- Windshield wipers – windshield wipers remove the rain from your windshield, thus replacing your windshield wipers once a year will keep them in top condition.
- Tires – tires can be the difference of you retaining traction or slipping across the roadways. By maintaining tread on your tires, they will be able to disperse the water and prevent hydroplaning.
- Lights – checking your lights to make sure they are functioning correctly will keep you safe by allowing for greater visibility.
- Hydroplaning – Hydroplaning is the very common during the first ten minutes of heavy rainfall. Hydroplaning is a result of your tires riding on top of the water. This causes a reduced amount of steering control as a result of driving too fast.
- Avoid Areas of Deep Water – Never drive though deep water where you cannot see the bottom or moving water. This can result in your car lifting and drifting away uncontrollably. This will create a very dangerous situation for everyone in the car, not to mention causing major damages to your vehicle.
- Driving Through Water – On occasion, driving though water is unavoidable, so it is recommended to proceed with caution and drive slowly. It is recommended to maintain your momentum by keeping your tires moving while traveling though puddles.
- Lightly Braking – After you have traveled through any water, test your brakes by lightly tapping them, this will dry them out. It is common for brakes to become saturated after driving though a puddle, thus decreasing their functionality.
- Window Fog – Window fog is common as a result to humid conditions, so preventing fogging can be done my turning on the air conditioning along with the heat. This will alleviate any fog that has accumulated on the windshield. If the fog is still not removed, try wiping the windshield with a clean rag.
- Increase Following Distance – During normal driving conditions, each driver should remain 10 feet for every 10 miles per hour. Of course, when it rains, this distance should increase to allow the vehicle you are traveling behind to react.
- Low Beam Headlights – Low beam headlights will help increase your visibility in rainy conditions, whereas high beam headlights have been known to cause a glare and reduce visibility.
- Advanced Signaling – As heavy rain causes a delayed response, turning on your turn signal far in advance of your turn will allow other drivers to respond to your turning vehicle.
- Pull Over – In the case that the rain gets so heavy that you can no longer see, it is best to pull your vehicle to the side of the road until the rain passes though. Assure that your vehicle is pulled over as far as possible to avoid collisions with other vehicles. Also, keep your headlights on and your activate your yield lights so other cars can see you.
By being aware, being courteous, and abiding by traffic laws, we can greatly reduce our chances of being involved in auto accidents. If you have been involved in an auto accident during heavy rain, you could be entitled to compensation for your losses.