Your Guide to Driving in Inclement Weather
6 Safety Tips for Driving in Inclement Weather
Most people learn, and are comfortable with, driving in good weather. However, in life you are not always going to be driving in ideal conditions — which is why it’s so important to know how to drive in less than desirable weather. During bad weather, any unexpected hazard can result in a driver losing control and having a car accident. However, knowing the right precautions to take while driving in inclement weather will ultimately keep yourself, your passengers, and other drivers on the road safe. That’s why we’ve created this guide that outlines six tips to make sure that you arrive at your desired destination safely.
What’s Considered Inclement Weather?
Snow, sleet, frigid temperatures, heavy rain, hurricanes, high winds, tornados, and ice are all considered inclement weather events. Driving in these conditions can be extremely dangerous, as bad weather can limit your line of sight, alter your depth perception, and distract you from operating your vehicle properly. These conditions ultimately threaten the safety of all transit passengers and employees, and increase the likelihood of a car accident.
Although you should try to avoid driving in inclement weather all together, sometimes it’s inevitable. Which is why it’s important for drivers to know how to operate their vehicle in all kinds of conditions.
6 Safety Tips to Remember
In case you ever get caught driving in inclement weather, it’s important that you know these safety tips in order to keep everyone on the road safe. Follow these six tips to get to your destination safe and sound.
It’s of utmost importance to take extra precaution while driving in inclement weather and slow your speed down. Braking takes longer on slippery roads, so the slower you drive, the easier it will be for you to recognize potential hazards and stop your vehicle. Additionally, your tires get better traction on wet pavements while operating at lower speeds, so slowing down will reduce your chance for hydroplaning (tires losing grip on the road).
Leave Room Between Cars
While driving in inclement weather, it’s recommended that you leave “cushion” room between yourself and the car directly in front of you. After all, the last thing you want while driving during an inclement weather episode is to rear-end the vehicle in front of you — causing damage and possible injury. In order to avoid this, prioritize safe driving habits and make sure to leave double the room you normally would in front of you while driving.
Ensure Your Vehicle Equipment Works
If you know that you are going to be driving through bad weather ahead of time, it’s crucial that you make sure all of your vehicle equipment is working properly. It’s important to check all of your lights, brakes, tires, wipers, and other essential equipment to ensure that they’re working properly.
In addition to checking before driving in bad weather, you should also have your vehicle checked more frequently in the months where weather is unpredictable, such as winter or spring.
Utilize Your Headlights, Low Beams, and Hazard Lights
Your headlights, low beams, and hazard lights are not only there to help you see, but help other vehicles to see you as well. While driving in inclement weather, it’s important to utilize these lights in order to have a more clear view of what’s in front of you. For example, you should use your low beam headlights for a more clear line of sight when driving through thick fog.
Because inclement weather can be unpredictable, it’s important to keep your headlights as clean as possible — as dirty headlights can reduce visibility.
Related: Decode Your Dash: What Your Car Emergency Warning Lights Mean
We know this probably goes without saying, but you should always wear a seatbelt when operating a motor vehicle — especially in adverse weather conditions. Not only is it the law, but it will keep you and your passengers safe in the event that you are involved in an accident.
However, if you choose not to wear your seatbelt, you are risking being completely ejected from the vehicle in an accident — which is almost always deadly. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation, of the 23,824 passengers killed in 2020, 51 percent were not wearing their seatbelts.
Pull Over If Necessary
Although it will cause an unfortunate delay in your travels, you should always pull your vehicle over if you feel unsafe while driving. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, and pulling over will ensure the safety of you and your passengers.
Browse Our Inventory at Burlington Kia
If inclement weather gets the best of your car, and you’re in need of a new ride, look no further than Burlington Kia! With an extensive selection of available inventory, you are bound to find the car of your dreams in no time! Additionally, our expert team will help make the car buying process as seamless and stress free as possible.
Click the button below or visit our website to get in touch with our team to schedule a test drive (hopefully in ideal weather conditions)!