Driving in the wet weather can be risky business and one risk during the wet weather is aquaplaning. This is when wheels make contact with a body of water and lose traction, causing the vehicle to spin out of control and potentially cause an accident.
Today we’re going to look at several things that you can do to stay safe on the road while it’s wet.
Check Your Tyres
One of the most dangerous times to have worn, bald, or otherwise unsafe tyres is during wet weather. Your tyres provide your car with much-needed traction – and a wet and slippery road can be really difficult to grip. It’s worth ensuring that your tyres are in good condition and have the correct pressure – you can measure this yourself. All tyres have a little notch that shows the level of wear and tear. You can also check the pressure at your local service station. Alternatively, you could visit your local mechanic and they can help you out.
Get a Wheel Alignment
Correctly aligned wheels will ensure that your car is in the best shape it can be for wet weather driving. Having a professional wheel alignment performed is a good idea to help you stay safe. It can help to prevent aquaplaning and other weather-related road accidents.
Take it Easy
One very simple thing that you can do on wet and slippery roads is to take it easy. Try driving 10 km/h or so under the limit – especially if the rain is very heavy or visibility is limited by rain, fog or other weather.
Check Your Wipers
Worn or cracked windscreen wipers don’t work as well as they would if they were brand new. If they’re not working correctly you may struggle to see during a downpour. Make sure they’re in good shape before driving in the wet.
In Case of Aquaplaning
If you do aquaplane on a wet road, make sure to stay calm. If you panic you are more likely to lose control of your vehicle. If cruise control is on, switch it off by using the switch, not the brakes! However, you should not use cruise control in the wet anyway.
During an aquaplane, you have no control over your car. Don’t slam the brakes, as you will likely skid and lose control. Let your vehicle find its own path while gently easing your foot off the acceleration pedal. Then gently push the steering wheel where you want to go, and if you need to brake do so very gently in a light, delicate pumping fashion. If your car is equipped with ABS, you can brake normally.
Please stay safe on the road, and have your car serviced regularly. This not only reduces everyday risks, it could help you in harsh weather conditions, and prevent incidents such as aquaplaning.