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Driving your vehicle in rainy weather can increase your risk of accidents. Federal data suggests that rainy weather is more dangerous than snow, wind, fog or other weather-related factors and causes an average of 7,000 deaths per year. But a few common-sense precautions are all you need to stay safe on the road. Follow these safe-driving tips to make sure that you and your family arrive alive.
Keeping your speed down is one of the best things you can do to stay safe on the road, and this is especially true when it is raining. Always keep your speed at or below the posted speed limit, and keep in mind that speed limits were intended to be used under perfect driving conditions such as daylight driving with no road hazards.
When the roads are wet, it is more difficult to stop suddenly without skidding, and this is a major factor that contributes to auto accidents. The risk is even higher during the first rain of the season, because all the oils and grease that accumulated on the road surfaces are loosened up by the rain. This makes the roads even more slippery than you’d expect. Increase your following distance to at least 3-4 seconds between your vehicle and the one in front of you.
Poor visibility is the biggest problem for many drivers when it rains. If your windows are fogged up or your windshield wiper blades aren’t working well, you will have a difficult time seeing other vehicles on the road. In some cases, you cannot even see the cars and would have no idea they were there if not for their headlights.
So replace old wiper blades and use your defroster or wipe your windshield interiors before getting onto the road. Always driving with your headlights on as well. The headlights might not help you see other vehicles, but it will help those drivers see you.
Lastly, be prepared for an accident. Maintain no-fault driver’s insurance and keep your updated paperwork in your glove compartment. Have an emergency kit in your trunk with flares and mini reflective cones/signs. Keep some rain gear from a company like Ben’s Cleaner Sales like a coat, hat and gloves in the vehicle in case you have to get out and change a flat tire or inspect vehicle damage in the rain.
Driving in the rain cannot always be avoided, so the best you can do to stay safe is to follow all traffic laws and use these safe driving tips.