It’s the most common type of weather we have in this fine country of ours regardless of the time of year. So it makes sense to have a look at the many dangers that can arise when driving in the rain.
You might think, being Irish, that you know all there is to know about driving in wet conditions but it’s good to remind yourself that rain can be just as dangerous as ice.
1. It might sound basic but rain can limit your visibility so make sure your windscreen wipers are working and that you can see clearly. When overtaking, be wary that rain can also distort your vision so be extra careful in terms of your blind spot and remember that your stopping distance should be at least doubled in wet conditions. If you’re not into your maths, leave more space than usual (and then some) between you and the car in front and brake with extra care.
2. Avoid puddles. Failing this, take your time when driving through a puddle especially if it’s deep. Puddles can hide potholes which can lead to a tyre puncture. If driven through at speed they could potentially flood your engine which isn’t great for your car or purse! If you do drive through a puddle make sure you test and dry your brakes. To do this, press on your brakes lightly a number of times over a short distance.
3. Hydroplaning is one of the bigger risks when it comes do driving in the rain. If there is a lot of surface water on the road, it can prevent your tyres from gaining traction which can lead to skidding or a collision. To avoid this, drive slower and make sure your tyres are in good nick (properly inflated and the correct amount of tread). If you do end up hydroplaning, don’t turn the wheel suddenly or slam on the breaks. Ease off the accelerator to reduce your speed. This will hopefully allow your car to gain traction again and you to gain control of the vehicle.
Check back here for weekly driving tips, with thanks to MSL Ballsbridge