5 Essential Strategies for Navigating Wet Roads

Heavy rainfall can challenge the driving skills of even an experienced motorist. Reduced visibility and an increased risk of sliding can cause a dangerous situation in an instant. However, navigating rainy roads safely can be done by prioritizing preparation, employing defensive driving techniques, and remaining aware of your surroundings. If you do experience a wreck caused by bad weather, a Charleston, SC car accident lawyer may be able to help. Read on to learn more about driving safely in the rain.

Wet Road Drifting

Properly Preparing for a Trip in Rain

Even if you`re just running out to the store to pick up some household essentials, it`s vital to make sure you can reach your destination safely. Weather forecasts and real-time traffic updates help you anticipate heavy rainfall and road closures. Opt for alternate routes or delay your departure if heavy downpours or flooding are predicted. Planning ahead minimizes stress and keeps you from encountering a dangerous situation on the road.

Keeping Your Car Ready for the Elements

You need to be able to trust in your vehicle`s ability to conquer the elements when you hit the road. Ensure your car is ready for the challenge of wet, slick roads by focusing on key vehicle components. To begin with, inspect your tires. If you have tires with worn-out tread, they will not be able to grip the road properly. For optimal performance, aim for tread depths exceeding 4/32 of an inch. Rotate and replace tires as needed to keep a safe set of wheels on your ride and make sure they are inflated to manufacturer-standard levels.

Next, address your windshield wipers. Old blades may not adequately clear debris or water from your windshield, compromising your vision. Replace them promptly to ensure that you can see the road during a downpour. Finally, confirm that all vehicle lights work as intended. Functional headlights, brake lights, and turn signals help you maintain visibility and allow other drivers to see your vehicle clearly.

Defensive Driving Techniques for Rainy Days

Adjust your driving style to account for poor weather conditions. When driving on wet roads, it`s important to bring your speed down so that you can bring your car to a stop or evade obstacles in your path. Keep in mind that stopping distances increase substantially in wet weather, so drive defensively to avoid potential hazards. Increase your following distance to accommodate the conditions, providing a buffer zone to react to unexpected maneuvers by other drivers.

Smooth, precise driving is key when driving in bad weather. You should take care to be gentle on the brakes and accelerator, as sudden changes in speed can cause your tires to lose traction and skid. When braking, be gentle and consistent so that you don`t begin to slide. Accelerate smoothly so that your wheels don`t spin on the wet road. Cornering can be challenging in the rain. Slow down before you begin your turn and maintain a consistent speed to stay in control of the maneuver. 

Enhancing Visibility on the Road

Heavy rain significantly reduces your ability to clearly see the road. Even if you`re driving during the day, you should turn on your car`s headlights so you are more visible to other motorists. Keep your windows clear by properly using the defroster settings. Crack open a window slightly to combat condensation if the defroster isn`t working quickly enough.

Emergency Preparedness and Safety Measures

Your vehicle should always have an emergency kit in it, in case you find yourself dealing with a problematic situation while driving. In addition to a first aid kit, your car should be equipped with water, non-perishable snacks, blankets, a flashlight, and a portable phone charger. If your car breaks down or you become stranded due to poor weather, having these essentials available will keep you in good health and comfortable. 

You should be prepared for the possibility of hydroplaning if you`re driving on slick roads. Hydroplaning occurs when your tires lose traction with the surface of the road and you`re essentially traveling on a lawyer of water. If this situation occurs to you, take your foot off the gas. Do not slam on the brakes or jerk the steering wheel, as these actions can cause you to lose control of your car. Allow the car to coast to a stop. Once you feel traction with the ground again, the vehicle should be safe to operate. 

Heavy rain and storms can create conditions that are dangerous even to an experienced driver. If you feel that you are at risk if you continue driving during a storm, search for a well-lit, elevated place to safely wait out the storm. You want to pick a place that is high enough to avoid the possibility of flooding. If visibility is so limited that you are unable to drive any further, get on the shoulder of the road outside the flow of traffic.

Staying Safe on the Road During Heavy Rain

Driving in the rain doesn`t have to be a stressful or challenging experience. By practicing defensive driving and adapting to road conditions, you can navigate bad weather safely with confidence. We hope this article helps you stay safe the next time you get behind the wheel.