Be careful out there in the rain

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During the first rainfall of the season, the roads will be more hazardous as the oil and grease, collected on the roads during the dry season, will make the roads more slippery than they are in the middle of the rainy season.

The CEO of MasterDrive, Eugene Herbert, says if you do find your car starting to skid, follow these tips.

“The most important reaction is to gradually reduce your speed. Don’t brake harshly and suddenly. Keep both hands on the steering wheel. Look where you want to be. While this may seem counterintuitive, our instinct is to steer in the direction that we are looking. Thus, if there is a tree in front of you, don’t look at the tree, rather look at where you want to be,” advises Herbert.

Follow these additional tips on the best way to handle the roads in wet conditions:

•     Check your wiper blades to ensure that they have not weathered over winter.
•     Give yourself more travel time so you do not have to rush in bad weather.
•     Adjust your speed to suit the conditions, however, do not slow down unnecessarily as this is just as dangerous.
•     Do not use cruise control.
•     If your headlights are not already on, turn them on.
•     Leave double the following distance.
•     Do not forget to drive looking 12 seconds ahead.
•     Brake earlier and with more caution.
•     Avoid water that has pooled on the roads.
•     If you cannot avoid this, drive through it slowly in case there is hidden debris or potholes.
•     Driving recklessly and speeding increases the chances of hydroplaning.
•     If you hydroplane, slowly lift your foot from the accelerator but do not brake harshly or move your steering wheel violently.
•     If there is a section of road with fast flowing water, rather turn around or pull over if you can safely do so. It only takes 15cm of water to lift a car off the tar.
•     Consider going for driver training on a skidpan to learn how to react if you do lose control during rainy weather.

As you head home this afternoon, keep these tips in mind.

“Encountering difficulty on the road while it is raining can be an overwhelming and frightening experience. If you have this information ingrained in your mind, you will know what to do no matter your reaction,” says Herbert.

Source: MotorPress