Probability of rain? When Mother Nature is pouring her liquid love all over the landscape to make rosebuds bloom and urge you to get out and dance, some bad driving habits that don’t cause difficulties when the road is dry are extremely difficult to break.
But don’t be alarmed, my friends. If there’s a 100% probability of rain on your local roads and you absolutely, surely must be there in half an hour, I’ve put together a fast list of driving behaviors you should instantly abandon. Before you open that umbrella and head out into the rainy wilderness, take some multivitamins to boost those memory cells. Read through the next five little empowering notes and when you arrive home with your automobile — and your spinal cord — in one piece, you’ll thank me.
Easy, Easy… Stay Off The Side Of The Road Will Ya
Okay, this isn’t always possible. You might be on a narrow one-lane road and the sides may be the only place you have to drive. There might be a long line of cars in the middle lane already, forcing you to the stay to the left or the right. But here’s the theory:
Roads are constructed so that they’re highest in the middle. The difference may be slight, but it causes water to run off the center hump (actually, it’s called a crown) and drain toward the edges. If you’re driving in the rain you want to avoid standing water. This means that you want to be where the water isn’t — and that’s in the center of the road. No, the center won’t be dry either, especially if it’s still raining, but it’s going to be the driest place around that isn’t in somebody’s garage.
Don’t Be So Quick To Turn Off Your Headlights (but leave the High Beams alone!)
Our headlights, like everything else, can lead us to believe that they are solely focused on us. They act as a pair of large flashlights that don’t need to be replenished every time the power goes off, allowing us to see what’s in front of us. In fact, even during the day, you need your headlights to see other people when it’s pouring. The lack of sunlight makes the world look like one big mass of overcooked oatmeal in the murky gloom of a rainstorm, even if it’s just a light drizzly one, and seeing a pair of headlights coming out of that bowl of soup will remind other drivers that — whoops! — there’s something in that soup and it doesn’t look like beans!
However, if headlights are assisting you in being noticed, you don’t want to mistakenly blind others with them. Other motorists are already having difficulty navigating the area. Turn off your high beams so you don’t blind them.
If The Rain is as Thick as Syrup Oozing Over Your Windshield and You Start Craving Pancakes, Please Stop Driving!
Okay, this one may seem obvious, but it’s astonishing how many people appear to be missing common sense. Even if you know the road so well that you could drive it while sound asleep while blindfolded, you shouldn’t drive it with enough water on the windshield to support a goldfish colony. Because you can’t see ahead, you don’t know what’s around the corner. It’s possible that there are stopped cars in front of you that you’re not aware of.
It’s possible that you’ll come across some puzzled pedestrians in your way that may believe they are watching a Tik-Tok video! Also possible is that you’re not driving as straight as you think, and that you’re heading straight for a bridge abutment.
When visibility begins to deteriorate, pull over to the side of the road as soon as it is safe to do so. Please come to a complete stop. While you wait for things to clear up, take a chill pill and listen to soothing music. Take out your phone and call mom and apologize for all those times you left the fridge door open for no reason and most importantly let them know your current location and situation. Or, if you’re not alone in your vehicle, turn to the person next to you and learn more about them. From less fortunate beginnings, wonderful partnerships have blossomed.
Pssst….Your Car is Not a Raft, So Don’t Drive Through Flooded Areas. Seriously, DONT!
Okay, we don’t mean literally, but if you see water pouring over the road from one side to the other and aren’t sure how deep it is, don’t try to drive through it! You’re not in a naked and afraid episode and your not going to wind prize at the end. If the rain was too loud for you to hear the first time, I’ll say it again: Do not attempt to drive through it! Every year, careless drivers believe that fording a small stream of precipitation, no deeper than an inch or two, will not harm their vehicles.
You’d be shocked how many of these people end up being washed off the road and into a raging torrent of rainwater as they urgently struggle to get out of their car and grasp a tree limb to avoid sinking below the waterline. It’s better to wait out the storm and the rain than to risk your life — and the lives of those close to you — because you thought a little water wouldn’t hurt you.
Even if the water isn’t moving, you have no idea what’s beneath it if the bottom isn’t visible. A pothole the size of a swimming pool could be present. There could be shattered glass or nails from a truck. If you can’t see the bottom, don’t risk your life by putting your tires on the submerged pavement. Stop a safe distance from the water’s edge or find a method to drive around it if possible.
Do We Really Need to Remind You Not to Drive Your 4 to 6 Thousand Pound Rolling Box Called a Car Like a Maniac in The Rain?
Speed limits are in place to let you know how safe it is to drive in excellent weather. When the weather is terrible and the roads are flooded, speed limits are useless. Drive safely in them, and the worse the circumstances are, the slower you should go.
Hydroplaning is the most dangerous hazard of driving too fast in the rain. No, you don’t hydroplane when you’re flying off on a fishing trip in a Cessna with pontoons. When your car thinks it’s a boat while still on the highway, it’s called hydroplaning.
Normally, your tires can slice through the water in front of them while remaining in contact with the road surface.
However, if the road is wet and you’re driving too quickly, your automobile may float on top of the water, causing the tire tread to lose contact with the road surface. This is a disaster. This is a disaster! You can no longer steer when your tread loses contact with the road surface. You are no longer able to brake. When you hydroplane, this is what occurs.
You may not realize you’re hydroplaning until you press the brakes, and the car begins to slip out of control. As a result, it’s best to avoid traveling at hydroplane speeds in the first place.
What Should You do if You’ve Already Lost Control and Notice You’re Hydroplaning?
First and foremost, don’t panic (though you’ll be tempted to). Don’t slam on the brakes since that will only make things worse. Let off the gas pedal to allow any leftover traction to slow you down. And keep your eyes on the road. Make no attempt to turn. Don’t fight the automobile if it’s going off in a direction you don’t want to go; just follow your wheels. And as the automobile slows, you’ll find yourself back in control (almost miraculously).
At this point, we recommend exiting the vehicle and allowing your pulse rate to return to normal. It will be useful. Furthermore, your feelings are not a decision, but your actions are