How to drive safely in the rain

Driving takes all of our concentration at the best of times. Driving in the rain is much more difficult. In wet conditions, it’s imperative to understand how to safely manoeuvre your vehicle and avoid weather-related car accidents. Responsible driving means that you’ll be more likely to complete your journey safely. 

Regular car servicing and vehicle maintenance play an important part in managing your vehicle in the rain. If your car’s services are up to date and you’re keeping an eye on vehicle maintenance, chances are your brakes, steering, heating and cooling systems will be fully operational even during the worst weather, which means you can focus on the road rather than worry about your car’s performance. 

Employing the techniques from our guide below could save your life or the life of other drivers. Understanding how wet roads and reduced visibility affect the way your car behaves will help you to stay safe when driving in wet and rainy conditions.

Keep both hands on the steering wheel throughout the entire journey.
This will give you more control over the car.

Check your tyres. Make sure that your tyres are in good condition. So, when it’s raining your tyres will have the best chance of gripping the roads when they’re slippery.

Use extra caution when rainfall follows hot, dry spells. Over time, engine oil and grease build up on roads and when they’re wet the surfaces become slippery.

It’s tempting to drive at a normal speed but in wet weather it’s best to slow your speed down. Wet roads cause tyres to lose traction and lessen their ability to grip the roads.

If you’re driving behind a car in the rain, try to drive in that car’s tracks as they will have moved much of the standing water for you.

Increase your distance from any cars on the road in front of you. This will give you extra time to make any manoeuvres if the car in front has a problem. It will also maximise your breaking time if the car in front stops suddenly without warning.

Avoid puddles and standing water where possible. Water can hide potholes which can cause damage to your car. Standing water can also cause your car to aquaplane causing you to lose control of your car

If your car does start to aquaplane then take your foot off the accelerator, keep both hands on the steering wheel and try to gently apply the brakes.

Keep your window wipers in tip-top condition. Window wipers are there to help clear the water from your windscreen but if they’re old or damaged, they can actually make your visibility worse.

Don’t use cruise control. It’s important that you can feel how the car is reacting to the road and be able to make instant changes if and when necessary.

If you can turn these tips into driving habits each time it rains, you’ll be much safer at the wheel. Accidents and crashes can be avoided by driving responsibly. Be aware of your surroundings and other drivers and most importantly, slow down when driving in the rain.

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