By Alberto Frammartino, April 2, 2022
Now that spring is here, the weather often goes to extremes. Thunderstorms, rainstorms and even tornadoes pose a challenge to driving safely. Proper braking during rain and steering clear of flooded underpasses are just a couple of ways to handle extreme weather. It’s also recommended to gather car insurance quotes to gain peace of mind that you will be covered for the unexpected.
Tips for Driving in Fog
⦁ Wait for it to clear. If you are having a lot of trouble navigating through the fog, safely pull over to the far right side – well clear of the traffic line, and turn on your four way flashers. Fog doesn’t usually last long, so your wait time should be minimal.
⦁ Turn on the low beams or fog lights. Your bright headlights will only be a distraction in fog; they won’t allow you to see anything faster or more clearly. Low beams and fog lights serve as a great way for others to see you, as well.
Tips for Driving through High Winds
⦁ High profile vehicles, that is, cars that have a high center of gravity such as trucks, SUV’s, trailers, vans, etc., are best not driven at all when winds are high.
⦁ Keep your eyes peeled for flying debris, such as trash, that can limit your visibility and also larger items like tree branches that can create safety issues.
⦁ Be especially careful over bridges as the wind has nothing to limit it.
Tips for Driving in the Rain
⦁ Keep the defroster or the air conditioner running so the mirrors and windows don’t fog up, limiting visibility.
⦁ Turn on the headlights. Not only is it the law in most states but it will also make you a thousand times more visible to other drivers.
⦁ Watch for flooded areas. Underpasses, roads that skirt large bodies of water, and valleys are all prone to flooding. Never go through a flooded area, instead, move around it.
⦁ Don’t use cruise control in the rain as the wet conditions may cause your car to hydroplane. Hitting your brakes to turn off the cruise control makes a hydroplaning situation worse.
Tips on Driving with a Tornado in Sight
⦁ Do not take shelter under an overpass. According to the NOAA and Red Cross, it still exposes you to extreme wind, debris, etc.
⦁ If you see a tornado, drive to a sturdy shelter as soon as you can. A restaurant, truck stop, convenience store will all do – and then go to the cellar, basement or hallway within this structure.
⦁ If a tornado is coming your way and you can’t move your car due to a break down or heavy traffic, find a ditch or the lowest spot possible.
⦁ If you are stuck in your car and the tornado is imminent, keep your seat belt on and cover your head to protect it against the windows blowing out.
⦁ Drive at a right angle to the movement of the tornado if you’re able to – for example if it is headed east, then you should head south.
⦁ Never try to outrun a tornado.
⦁ Tune in to the radio for updates on where the tornado is headed.
Tips for Driving through a Thunderstorm
⦁ If you’re able to avoid driving through a thunderstorm, then do so. Wait it out or pull safely over until visibility is normal again.
⦁ Prepare yourself for the thunder and lightning. Bright lights and loud noises are frightening. Brace yourself for these things so you don’t panic or get too startled.
⦁ If you’re driving anything except for a hard roofed vehicle, take shelter. Convertibles, golf carts, motorcycles are no match for heavy winds, rains and lightning.
⦁ Tune into the radio for weather updates and where the most extreme weather, including tornadoes, have been spotted.
Driving in Ice & Snow
⦁ If you are planning a mountain road trip, it’s possible you will encounter ice and snow. Remember to slow down on overpasses and bridges and watch for black ice.
⦁ Use the defroster as often as possible to keep the windows and mirrors clear.
⦁ Go easy on the brakes. If you brake abruptly you could lose control of the car.
⦁ If you end up getting stuck in the snow, straighten the wheels and slowly accelerate. Spinning tires will get you nowhere fast.
Springtime brings all types of weather with it, and the best way to get to where you’re going in one piece is to be prepared for it ahead of time.