According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 75% of weather-related auto wrecks happen on wet roadways with 47% of crashes occurring while it’s raining. Those percentages translate to 544,700 annual injuries on wet roads and 357,300 annual car crash injuries whenever it rains.
Also, more than 50% of auto fatalities are flood-related.
Tips to Keep You Safe When Driving in the Rain
If you don’t want to end up crashing into another car or hydroplaning in wet weather, you need to learn how to navigate properly. Keep the following details in mind if you get caught in a downpour or must tackle the roadway on a damp and rainy day.
Try to Keep in the Middle of the Road
If you’re traveling down a narrow roadway, it might be difficult to avoid driving on the side. Maybe you’re following a long line of traffic in a middle lane and you’re forced to veer left or right.
However, if you can do so, it’s better to stay in the center when you’re driving in the rain. That’s because the middle of the road is slightly higher, so water drains down toward the sides. As a result, staying away from the sides keeps you from driving through standing water or the more watery areas of the pavement.
Use Your Headlights But Don’t Overdo It
You should drive with your headlights on when you’re driving through the rain, especially if it’s a gray and gloomy day. Just make sure you keep them on low-beam. After all, you want the other driver to see you approaching, but you don’t want to throw them off course with some glaring lights.
Pull Off to a Safe Area If the Rain Is Flooding Your Windshield
If the rain is pelting your windshield with so much water that you can hardly see, drive off the road and to a safe spot and wait things out. Even if you’re driving down a road you’ve driven hundreds of times, pull over. You might not see a pedestrian or you may be swerving without realizing it.
It may also be difficult for the driver behind you to see you ahead of them.Therefore, you could rear end the vehicle in front of you or a driver could run into the back of your car.
Don’t Ford Any Small Rivers or Streams
If you’re driving through a heavy rain and you see deep water, don’t try to ford it. Also, don’t drive through water that does not even look that deep. You might find yourself quickly in the midst of a deep stream or in a current that could sweep you away.
If you come to a small pool of water that is motionless and you don’t see the bottom, don’t try to drive through it. Instead, go around it. Submerged asphalt can contain nails or fragments of glass.
Never Drive Fast
When it’s drippy outside, speed limits are worthless. Make it a habit to drive slowly. You don’t want to find yourself hydroplaning out of control. Not only do your tires lose their connection with the road, you’ll find it impossible to brake and steer.
When this happens, it’s almost like being in a boat accident. Your car, because it loses traction with the road, virtually becomes a “boat.”
Play It Safe: Call a Personal Injury Lawyer If You Get Hit and It’s Not Your Fault
If you get caught in a rainstorm and someone, through their own carelessness, hits your vehicle and injures you, speak to a personal injury attorney right away. Call Slappey & Sadd to schedule a consultation now at (888) 474-9616.