By Ruth Mwathi:
Image from Pexels
As much as rain can be a blessing, driving in heavy rain can be hazardous. During this heavy downpour the number of vehicle breakdowns is usually quite high, this is due to the wet weather which results to dampness causing problems with the engine and electrical system in your car. Therefore, knowledge on how to navigate our vehicles during these seasons is necessary. Here are some useful tips to help you in that wet weather:
Wait for the Rain to subside
If you feel uncomfortable driving in wet conditions it is no harm to wait for the rain to subside, you can engage yourself in some activity like grab a cup of coffee and sit it out, or finish pending work assignments at the comfort of your desk.
While driving in the heavy downpour it is good to watch your speed limit. Ensure that you leave plenty of room between you and the car in front of you. This is because your stopping distances are increased so your vehicles reaction time as far as stopping is much slower when it’s raining. Hence the need to drive slower than your normal speed.
Switch on your Headlights
Putting on your headlights will allow you to see clearly as well as enable other drivers to see you on the road. Ensure that you do not have the headlights on full brightness, when the headlights are fully bright, it is easy for the light to reflect on the wet surfaces affecting your ability to see as well as that of other drivers.
Make use of your Windshield Wipers
Having your windshield wipers on, helps clear your view as you drive through the heavy rain. While driving through the heavy rain, avoid driving too close to large trucks or buses as they could easily splash dirty water onto your windscreen, making your visibility worse, once the wipers try to wipe it off.
Ensure to examine your wiper blades while driving, in the event they need to be replaced you could do so before another heavy downpour catches you unaware.
Avoid large pools of water
The recent floods right here in our country was evident of what happens while you try driving through large pools of water. You could be easily carried away by the water endangering your life and the lives of those you have on the passenger seat.
Driving through still pools of water is not safe as well as it causes hydroplaning to occur. This is when you lose control of your car due to the excess amount of water built up between the vehicle tyres and the road surface causing one to skid off the road easily.
Keep a close eye for pedestrians
When it rains heavily visibility tends to be lower and sound is often deafened by the rain. Therefore, the usual cues that you would easily pick up on the road when its sunny would need you to be keener and more attentive during the rainy season. The likelihood of pedestrians randomly crossing the road seeking shelter from the heavy rain is high. Hence the need to be more cautious, as you could easily run over a pedestrian unintentionally.
Driving safely during the heavy rains is quite simple by applying these safety precautions you reduce the chances of unnecessary accidents to yourself and to other road users as well.