Ideally, when the weather outside is bad, you must stay home. But unfortunately, some of us have to take our cars on the road even in bad weather. What’s bad weather you ask? It could be rain, snow, wind, fog, or sleet.
No matter how careful you are, a reminder always helps. So here are some essential tips to stay safe when driving in bad weather:
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#1: Plan It Out
Driving in bad weather is always stressful. You must leave home earlier than usual to reach your destination timely. Even if you know it’s raining, it’s best to check the weather before you leave. Planning ahead always keeps you from trouble.
I’m big on planning. Looking for a new Internet provider, I outlined my budget and bandwidth requirement before signing up for Cox deals Internet. When it’s raining or foggy outside, planning ahead also helps you take an alternative route to your destination.
#2: Drive Slowly
I know I know, we all hate slow drivers but for the sake of your safety and others, drive slowly. This reduces the chances of accidents and skids.
#3: Don’t Tailgate
You must always leave some distance between you and the car ahead of you. This safe distance protects you if the driver uses his brakes all of a sudden.
#4: Don’t Apply Brakes During a Turn
The best practice is to gradually turn the steering wheel and feather the brakes lightly before the turn. Coast through the turn while you take your foot off the gas and brake to be sure you don’t gain speed all of a sudden.
#5: Turn on Low Beam Headlights
When you are driving in fog, always turn on the low beam headlights even if it’s daytime. Low beam headlights don’t just help you see but they help others spot your car. It’s pertinent for the safety of everyone on the road.
It’s equally important to maintain a large distance and drive slowly. However, you might not be able to see another car or even the traffic light until you are near to it. Stay close to the right side of the road during fog to avoid smashing into oncoming traffic.
#6: Tune Into the Radio
You can’t constantly check the weather on your phone when you are on the road, right? No problem! Just tune in to the radio. It will keep you posted with the road conditions. Make sure you are listening to it at a low volume because you have to be highly focused while you are driving.
#7: Double Check the Seat Belts
You and the passengers must be wearing a seatbelt at all times. It’s not just the law but it keeps everyone safe.
#8: Pull-Over Whenever Necessary
It’s hard to be on the road when the weather is bad. If stressful driving has made you tired, pull over and rest for a little while. It’s better than risking your life. Find a safe place on the road to pull over.
#9: Watch Out for People and Hazards
People on bicycles, motorbike, and foot are hard to spot in bad weather. Therefore, you have to be extra cautious and drive slowly. Stay vigilant to spot the vulnerable road users.
#10: Cross the Bridges and Overpasses Carefully
You must be extra careful while crossing bridges and overpasses in rain or cold weather. These areas freeze faster and they stay frozen for longer.
#11: Don’t Drive If You are Uncertain about the Depth
Don’t cross a flooded road if you are not sure about its depth. Only cross the road if you can see the road through the water. This is a precautionary measure you must take when you are driving in rain or flood.
#12: Prepare Your Car for the Weather
Apart from the safety measures discussed above, it’s best to check your car before heading out. Here’s what you must do:
- Check the windshield wipers. If the rubber is cracked, have it replaced. Those who live in an area that gets lots of ice and snow, it’s recommended to invest in winter blades.
- Make sure you clean the headlight covers before heading out. They turn cloudy and yellow cutting the amount of light.
- Before winter sets in, have your car serviced. Use winter-grade fluid to prevent the oil from freezing.
- Stock an emergency kit in your car. It must include jumper cables, an air compressor, shovel, flashlight, road flares, tow rope, ice scraper, and a blanket.
- Don’t warm up your car if it is in an enclosed garage.
- Keep your tank at least half full at all times.
- Make sure your tires are inflated and have enough tread.
I would prefer staying at home and watching TV on my Cox service if the weather is not good. However, if I have to be on the road, I stick to these safe driving tips. You must too!