It is dangerous to drive in poor weather. Some conditions including snow, rain, sleet, fog, or high winds can reduce the traction and hinder visibility. They also make drivers lose control easily, causing sudden accidents.
So, how to protect yourself when driving under such circumstances? This article will provide you with 5 safe driving tips in bad weather in general and some tips in specific conditions specifically. Let’s have a look right now!
Top 5 general tips to drive in the bad weather
1. Keep control of your speed
As you can guess and from my experience, during the risky conditions and bad weather, driving swiftly is not a great idea. The high speed might lead to the hydroplaning phenomenon. Besides, there are a lot of accidents or collisions occurred as people drive too fast.
Thus, it is recommended to control your car at a slow or moderate speed when traveling. When it rains, snow, or even under inclement weather, you should diminish the vehicle’s speed to 10 miles at least. The number should be below the limitation.
Slow speed can reinforce your traction. Also, you will have more time to handle or react to road obstacles. In case you lose control unfortunately, you should release the car brake pad until you get the control back. After that, you can try to brake once more time.
2. Avoid changing lanes many times
The bad weather such as the fog might hinder your vision ahead. Hence, it is better to change lanes only when you absolutely need to do that. Attempt to avoid as many lane changes as possible.
One more situation that you may encounter on the wet road, for example, could be losing vehicle control. The slippery condition may make your vehicle go in the wrong direction. Then, your car is likely to be hit unexpectedly by undetected cars. So, again, the best method is to remain in the same lane instead of switching unnecessarily.
3. Ensure all the vehicle equipment work well
The first thing you should pay attention to is the tires. To improve traction under bad weather, think about equipping your vehicle with all-season tires. In addition, mixing tires of different tread, construction, or size is not suitable. It might hinder you from maintaining optimum control.
Next, you need to have your car brakes checked regularly, especially in the winter. Some other equipment such as windshield wipers or headlights also needs total care. Simply, clearing windshields and cleaning dirty headlights, you can maximize visibility.
4. Accelerate or brake smoothly and lightly
Some drivers may rush to overcome the bad weather so that they often make some forceful or sudden movements. This action will be risky to some certain extent as it causes the tread to lose its grip, especially during icy or wet roads.
Now, here are some suggested solutions that you can follow. In case you want to slow down, you can pump the brake lightly. By doing that, the possibility of locking or spinning tires will be reduced.
By contrast, if your car has the ABS, just need to hold the brake down in emergencies. Your car might stop the car wheel from locking. It also allows you to handle well with hazards.
Besides, when you use braking techniques and smooth acceleration, you can improve fuel economy. Combining these two actions can reduce wear to a valid extent in the brake pedals and tires.
5. Hold the steering wheel with both hands
In the beginning lesson, you were possibly taught to use both hands when driving all the time. Some professional drivers might ignore this rule. Yet, during the bad weather, stay alert and place two hands firmly on the car wheel. You can avoid making unexpected movements and keep firm control.
Moreover, remember not to use other body parts such as the leg or knee to control the wheel. One more tip you can consult is not to grip the wheel hard as your hands might be tired quickly. Then, it results in sudden and sharp moves and the tires will lose traction rapidly then.
Tips to drive in some specific weather conditions
If you go into this poor situation, you have to notice flying debris well. Always stay alert and avoid some big vehicles such as vans, trailers, or cargo cars. If you own some high-profile cars, a van, or a trailer, it will be better to not drive them in the high wind.
The most dangerous weather condition is dense fog. In case you have to drive in the fog, remember not to use the high-beam headlight. These lights will reflect the light off, making it more difficult to see. Turning the fog lights or regular headlights seems to be more suitable.
Additionally, you should keep a distance from the front vehicle. Pay attention to the white line that lies on your right. It can guide and help you stay remained in the right lane.
Snow or ice
First of all, you should drive at a slow speed and look out for black ice. Secondly, you have to keep the car windows clear. Not only the front windows but also your back window area, ensure all items be removed to have proper visibility.
For this situation, turning on wipers is a must. To get the optimal performance of the windshield wipers, you should replace them once or twice a year. Besides, turn on the headlights to increase the visibility. Last but not least, always keep calm, be patient, and do not use cruise control.
Above are 5 safe driving tips in bad weather that might help you to evade some traffic accidents. But these tips are not really foolproof. If you can, attempt to avoid going in poor weather conditions.
Simultaneously, ensure you equip your vehicle with auto insurance. Hopefully, you find this article useful, and you can share it with your beloved ones.