Drive through wet weather, like a boss!

With spring having settled in, and the first bits of wet weather showering in, we can safely say that “wet-weather” season has officially graced parts of the country. As refreshing as the rain can be we do need to take the necessary precautions so that we can live our way, #WhateverTheWeather.

Here are a few tips to help you navigate wet weather like a boss:

  • Be visible: Turn on your headlights, and when necessary, your emergency hazards too. Bad weather reduces visibility, so it will serve you to light it up and be seen.
  • Obey the road rules:Adjusting your driving doesn’t mean adjusting your obedience to road rules. The traffic signs are there to guide the road user and to ensure the safety of road users.
  • Stay alert and remain focused:Driving in bad weather will require you to drive defensively and thus you need to be aware of what’s going on around you. Avoid all distractions – yes, leave that cell phone alone and even turn down the radio if you must. In some areas, there may be animals wandering about or escaping from an enclosure with a damaged fence – be aware! Keep both hands on the steering wheel and eyes on the road. Don’t forget to look out for the pedestrians who may be trying to avoid mud puddles.
  • Give yourself space:You could be required to come to a stop all of a sudden - give yourself enough space between the car ahead of you to provision for this and keep you out of harm’s way. Also, keep your eye on the other vehicles to see whether they are safely staying in their lanes, making moves or coming to a stop that will affect you.
  • Slow down and be gentle on the pedals:Accelerate and brake as gently as you can. Braking on a slippery road takes longer bringing you to a stop than braking on dry ground. Drive at a safe speed that will allow you to come to a halt gradually and comfortably when taking your foot off the accelerator, instead of slamming the breaks. Where you can, avoid unnecessary and hasty lane changes or even overtaking where not necessary.
  • Watch the bends: when taking a curve, always change to a lower gear and reduce your speed more drastically than required on dry ground. The slow in/fast out technique will give you better control of your car when driving around a bend.
  • Approach intersections cautiously:In certain weather conditions – actually, in weather - we need to approach intersections with added care. Whatever the weather, don’t make the mistake of assuming that because the light is green for you, your path will be clear – be alert and scan the area for potential hazards. Remember, it’s harder to navigate with your rear-view mirror and those blind spots during wet weather.
  • Check your vehicle’s fitness: You already need your car in tip-top shape to navigate the roads safely, but this is even more important when driving in bad weather. Make sure that your windscreen, wiper blades, brakes, shocks, lights etc. are in a roadworthy condition and will serve you best when you need them most.

The weather impacts so many areas of our lives, it’s hard to get through it without a little disturbance in the usual way of doing things. Being on the road during a storm can be quite the adventure, requiring you take your driving skills to the next level. If your trip is not absolutely necessary and you can afford to wait it out, choose to do just that. If your car is insured with MiWay, you will be alerted of upcoming hail storms, warning you to move your car under cover.

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