Driving in the Rain

As we head towards spring, there are bound to be a few rainstorms heading our way in the coming weeks here in Gloucester County. When you’re confronted with wet road conditions and limited visibility due to precipitation while driving, here are few things you should keep in mind in order to stay safe:

Drive in the Middle of the Road (When Possible). If you’re driving on a multi-lane surface, select the one in the center so that the rain hitting your vehicle runs off on the sides and isn’t as cumbersome as it could be.

Limit Distractions. When you’re dealing with tough driving conditions, your attention should be focused 110% on the road. You should turn your stereo down or off, put away your GPS device and avoid any unnecessary interaction that could impede your ability to focus on the task at hand.

Use your Headlights & Wipers. In addition to helping you see the road better, your headlights also make your presence known to other cars and pedestrians. Your windshield wipers, meanwhile, are vital to maintaining visibility in the rain so try to remember to get them looked at any time you’re at an auto shop for service.

Avoid Flowing Water. If water is pooling and flowing across the road, find an alternate route. Flowing water can be extremely dangerous for your vehicle. You have no way of knowing how deep it is, how strong the current is, or what may be lurking below the surface. Your vehicle might lose traction with the road, run over a hidden pothole, damage the tires, or cause internal damage from the water. Avoid when possible, stop a safe distance away, and drive around the water.

Slow Down. Speed limits are set based on good road conditions. When the weather is bad and roads are wet, slow down to remain safe. Driving too fast puts your vehicle at risk of hydroplaning – losing traction with the road and floating above the water. If that happens, you have little to no control over where your vehicle goes. Even if you’re in a hurry, take your foot off the gas pedal. Remember – brakes can be affected by water and take longer to stop your vehicle when it’s wet. Start breaking earlier and leave more distance between your vehicle and the others on the road.

If you have any other questions/concerns regarding driving or your vehicle’s health, be sure to give our ASE-certified technicians a call at (804) 642-2440 – we’re here to help keep you safely on the road year-round!