It’s good to remember that you can take steps to be safer on the roads, but that doesn’t mean that everyone else will. Remember that storms are frightening to some people and may make others drive erratically or extremely slowly. You need to adjust your speed and actions to account for the ways that others react, so you can stay as safe as possible.
Since you can’t control others, the best thing you can do is to sit down and think about how you can improve your own driving in a stormy situation. Here are three tips that may help you stay safer when you’re caught in a storm.
1. Slow down
The first tip is to slow down as the rain begins to fall. The beginning of a storm is often the slickest. Why? As oil and debris begins to get wet, it creates a kind of slick coating on the roads. Once the oil is washed away, you’ll see marked improvement in the roadway’s grip and texture, though they’re still slicker than usual.
Slowing down also gives you more time to maneuver around fallen branches or to stop for slow or disabled vehicles.
2. Stay inside your vehicle
The next tip is to stay inside your vehicle at all times. Don’t put your hand out the window to catch the rain, and make sure you close any sunroof that you may have open. Doing this keeps you safe from potential lightning strikes and will protect you against being thrown from your vehicle or losing a limb if you’re involved in a crash.
3. Know when it’s time to pull over
One of the best things you can do is to know when it’s time to pull over and stop. If you can’t see ahead of you, need your hazard lights and are traveling at extremely slow speeds, it may be time to stop driving and to pull over into a parking lot or onto the berm.
These are three tips to help you stay safer during a thunderstorm. Stay alert, and you can help prevent crashes.