Driving in Bad Weather: 7 Safety Tips to Avoid a Car Crash

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Driving on the road is an activity that requires the utmost care and vigilance when lousy weather intervenes. Driving becomes extremely dangerous under slippery roads, and reduced visibility poses potent hazards for drivers. Slippery roads and reduced visibility are the leading causes of serious accidents. Such accidents can often result in fatal injuries. Thus, being extremely cautious while driving under such bad weather conditions is critical. New drivers are especially vulnerable in these conditions as they have never faced anything like it before and don’t know how to react.

Even the most skillful and careful drivers will need help in these testing conditions. Navigating your vehicle to your desired destination requires absolute prioritization of the vehicle’s safety and everyone around. Drivers must adopt a safety-first approach and drive carefully when faced with bad weather conditions. In some scenarios, it is even advisable to park the car in a safe place and wait for the inclement weather to stop. A responsible citizen has to practice safe driving when faced with such weather.

When faced with an accident due to bad weather, it’s advisable to contact a professional like a New Orleans accident lawyer to help you through this tough time. As a driver, here are some tips that will help you avoid legal penalties and avoid accidents. These tips will help you become more aware of how to drive in such weather conditions and what safety tips are an absolute must to consider during such testing times.

1. Slow Down

When bad weather hits you while you’re driving on the road, it is important to slow down your vehicle. Slippery roads are a nightmare for drivers, and one must take extra precautions to navigate such bad weather while driving. Decreasing the speed of your vehicle gives you more control and time to react in case anything unexpected happens. It is important to note that slowing down means reducing your average speed and not reaching a standstill. If you come to a complete halt in the middle of the road, you will likely cause more harm than good and become a hazard yourself.

2. Increase The Following Distance

When driving on a highway or a local road, drivers often leave minimal distances between themselves and the next car. Leaving extra space in case of bad weather is a must, as it allows you to react better in case the driver in front of you brakes or changes direction abruptly. Also, it will reduce the chances of a rear-end collision, as you will have ample time to brake in such a situation.

3. Use Headlights

Sometimes, in bad weather or overcast conditions, you may need to turn on your lights, even during the day. This tip is especially helpful in fog, heavy rain, or when dark clouds engulf the sky, and there’s limited visibility. It would be best to turn on the lights for better visibility under dark and overcast conditions.

4. Be Mindful of Hydroplaning

Friction is an important factor aiding our vehicles move about on roads. It helps traction between the road and the tires since it’s considerably reduced in rainy conditions. A thin film of water is present on the road, which results in hydroplaning and reduced friction between the road and tires. Such a scenario can be a dangerous one as the car can slip and steer out of your control. Avoiding this is simple: try to drive in the tire tracks of the vehicle in front of you, but be mindful of any braking and lane changes by them.

5. Avoid Cruise Control

Cruise control is an immense feature that helps motorists worldwide drive on highways. In bad weather, where the road is slippery, you must avoid setting the cruise control on as it reduces the vehicle’s reaction times. The drivers need to stay vigilant, and if the cruise control is active, deactivating it will take some precious seconds, which could be the difference between life and death in a situation.

6. Stay Informed

It is better to stay informed of your routes and weather forecast in the area you’re traveling to. If traveling to your desired location is necessary, proceed only after checking the weather forecast and the extent of the bad weather that awaits. However, consider delaying or rescheduling your trip to avoid bad weather.

7. Stay Calm and Focused

In case bad weather descends upon you while driving, it is highly critical to keep hold of all your senses and stay calm. Moreover, it is essential to keep your focus and remove distractions such as radio, music, or smartphone use. Stay away from the toggles of the stereo or AC system, and always stay focused on the road ahead.

It is important to exercise extreme caution when driving in conditions that are not conducive to driving. Bad weather, such as heavy snow, rain, or fog, can reduce visibility and cause vehicles to slip on the road. Drivers must be careful and drive slowly under these conditions.