Bad Weather - High Winds

Driving in High Winds

Driving in high winds can be very dangerous

  • Try and keep Keep both hands on the wheel so you are ready for any sudden gusts
  • Be ready for stronger winds and gusts on exposed stretches of road or when passing high-sided vehicles, gaps in hedges or buildings
  • Keep your speed down – strong gusts won’t blow you as far off course
  • Take care and leave extra room around cyclists and motorcyclists. They're particularly vulnerable to sudden gusts and may veer across the road
  • Keep your distance from other vehicles, especially high-sided vehicles and caravans
  • Avoid towing high-sided trailers like caravans or horseboxes if very windy conditions are forecast
  • Partially fallen trees can hang above the sweep of your headlights, making them hard to spot
  • Plan your journey carefully, checking weather and traffic bulletins regularly
  • Expect lower speed limits or temporary closures on exposed bridges – especially for towing vehicles – and road closures due to fallen debris or accidents

Side Winds

Some vehicle can become unstable in strong side winds because of their large surface area and comparatively low weight, This can happen particularly on exposed stretches of road such as motorways and bridges. The effects can very from a slight pull on the steering wheel to a distinct wander, possibly into the path of other vehicles. With very strong wind the vehicle can be blown off the road and on to its side. 

Cyclists and motorbikes - In gusty conditions watch out for cyclists and motorbikes being blown around the road, be aware that they may need extra room in high winds and you should act accordingly. 

High-sided vehicles - Drivers of high sided vehicles or thos towing caravans or trailers particularly empty ones should pay special attention  to forcasts of strong winds and avoid well known trouble spots and high bridges. Drivers of such vehicles need to be constantly on high alert for the effects of wind near bridges and embankments, even on normal jouneys in reasonable conditions. If there's a severe weather warning, consider whether your journey is really necessary.

Other drivers should be bear this in mind when about to overtake, or when being overtaken by, these paticular types of vehicles.