Basic Rules and Information
By following these simple rules you can greatly reduce your chance of being in a weather related accident!
- Rule #1: SLOW DOWN!
- Rule #2: In thick fog, drive with lights on low beam, reduce speed, crack open your window, and listen for traffic you cannot see.
o Never drive with just your parking or fog lights on.
- Rule #3: If an accident occurs or your vehicle stalls, pull as far off the road as possible, turn on flashing emergency lights, set out flares, and move to a safe area, preferably behind a guardrail.
o If there is no safe place next to the road, stay in your car and remain buckled up.
- Rule #4: Know how to defrost your car.
o Before turning on the defroster and blower, move the heat control to “hot” and allow the engine to warm up first. If the windshield starts to fog on the inside, open a side window slightly and turn the defroster to a higher speed. Use the air conditioner to reduce humidity and moisture collecting on the window.
- Rule #5: If your car has anti-lock brakes and goes into a skid, you may feel a vibration when pressing the brake pedal.
o Don't panic. Hold the brake pedal down firmly. Sensors in anti-lock brakes are adjusting to the wet road, which is why the pedal vibrates. Nothing is wrong, as long as you hold the brake down. Don't pump or lift your foot off the pedal.
- Rule #6: Drive in the tire prints of the car ahead of you.
o When a car hydroplanes, it's riding on a thin layer of water between the tires and the road. The water in tire prints has already been displaced, so you get better traction.
o If your car hydroplanes, hold the steering wheel steady and lightly apply brakes. When you feel the tires touch the pavement, slow until regaining control.
- Rule #7: Don't speed through standing water.
- Rule #8: For motorcyclists, crosswalk lines and pavement arrows are super-slick. Ease up on the throttle on takeoff. “Botts’ Dots” (the raised bumps that separate lanes) are also slippery, so limit lane-splitting.
- Rule #9: Keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front.
o Your braking distance is greatly increased in wet driving.
- Rule # 10: Don't brake while in a curve if at all possible.
o Brake before entering a curve.
- Rule #11: Use turn signals for all lane changes and turns well in advance.
- Rule #12: Don't change lanes
- Rule #13: Dark traffic signals or blinking red lights mean everyone must stop
- There are clear one-way reflective pavement markers on the right shoulder.
o The first three dots are about 2,100 feet in advance of an exit.
o The set of two markers are about 1,400 feet before an exit.
o The last single dot is about 700 feet from the exit ramp.
- New wiper blades are cheap insurance that you will be able to see out of the car well enough to get there and get back safely.
o If your wipers are on, your light should be on.
Driving in Floods
- The most dangerous place to be during a flood is on the road.