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Nov 17

Driving in High Winds and Heavy Rain

Posted by:AutoMoney

With the news suggesting that we are due to experience some really awful weather in the coming weeks, chances are that you will be out driving in some of these conditions!

With wind, heavy rain, and potential localised road flooding due to happen, it makes sense to try and be as prepared as possible for travelling in these conditions.

Driving in high winds

Unlike rain, we can’t see wind so all drivers have to be very vigilant when driving in adverse weather conditions. High winds can come all of a sudden out of nowhere and cause significant problems on the roads. If you are driving and experience high winds, you should slow your vehicle down and avoid getting too close to the car in front of you.  Keep well away from motorbikes and high sided vehicles as these are particularly prone to being affected by high winds. Be considerate of the wind speeds when you are travelling on open roads or over bridges; you will find that the winds can be stronger and more forceful here.

Heavy Rain and Flooding

If you find yourself driving in heavy rain conditions, or come across a road that is holding a lot of surface water, or flooding you need to remember the following:

  • Ensure that you have your lights on to aid visibility for yourself as well as other cars on the roads
  • Keep a safe distance from the car in front. Heavy rain conditions mean that visibility is poor and the road will produce a lot of spray.
  • If the road is particularly wet and greasy, you may find that your steering becomes unresponsive. If this happens, take your foot off the accelerator slowly, and start to slow down. Do not jerk the car or make sudden movements with the steering wheel, as this could cause the car to handle in a way that you are not prepared for. If the rain is particularly heavy or isn’t easing off, consider pulling over into a safe spot to wait for the rain to ease or the surface water to clear.
  • If you come across a road that is flooded, ensure first of all that you can see the road through the water – you should never attempt to drive through a flooded road if you are unsure how deep the water is. Attempting this has the potential to cause significant damage to your car.
  • If you are able to drive though a flooded road, try, wherever possible, to drive through the middle of the road – away from the kerbs. Do not attempt to drive through the road if there is a car coming towards you.
  • Drive through the flooded road in first gear, at a high engine speed. Drive slowly and steadily, keeping the steering loose. Do not change gear until you have passed through the flood.
  • Once you have passed through the flood, be sure to test your brakes by pressing them gently when driving on a flat surface. If you are going to do this, make sure you have adequate space between you and the car behind you.
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