Bad Weather - Wet Roads

Driving on Wet Roads

When the roads are wet you will have reduced grip between your car tyres and the road surface, this can make the roads slippery which will increase your chances of something going wrong.

When driving on wet roads its important to allow extra time for stopping as your stopping distance can double compared to that of a dry road. To allow for this you will need to give yourself plenty of time and room to slow down and stop.

As the road will become slippery you have to take more care when cornering and even different road surfaces might affect the grip of your tyres.

Considering Others – Pedestrians and cyclists can easily get drenched by passing vehicle. Look well ahead and avoid splashing pedestrians and cyclists if possible, make sure you allow extra room for cyclists to go around puddles but always make sure it is safe for you to move out wide around them. Deliberately splashing pedestrians could end up landing you in trouble with the law and you could be given a fine of up to £5000

Aquaplaning – A great danger when driving in the rain is aquaplaning. This is where a large build-up of water on the road allows your vehicle to skim across the surface of the water pretty much like a pebble does when skimmed across the surface of the sea.

Aquaplaning will mean your tyres lose contact with the road and cause your vehicle to slide across the water. Your steering will become very light and your vehicle may begin to lose control and slide to the side.

So, what can you do about it – If you start to aquaplane, slow the vehicle down by lifting off the accelerator (Gas pedal) Do Not Brake or try to change direction, because when you are aquaplaning, you will have no control at all over steering or braking?

The higher your speed on a wet road the greater your chances of aquaplaning. You much keep your speed down and watchout for pooling on the road surface.

Learn more about aquaplaning by watching the video below

Spray – Another reason for keeping your speed down on wet roads is the amount of spray thrown up by other vehicles.

The larger the vehicle the more spray it will throw up, this can make over taking larger vehicles more challenging and it can be an unnerving experience. Sometime even your wipers will not be able to keep your windscreen clear if the spray is too great and you may be temporarily blinded to the road ahead as you come close to over taking the larger vehicle and may need to reduce your speed.

Dealing with Floods- When you must drive through flooded areas, keep you speed low and your engine revs high, so a low gear would be best. If you are in any doubt as to the depth of the water do not try and pass through it unless your vehicle is properly equipped for such a purpose.

On roads that often flood you may be able to see the depth of the water using a roadside depth gauge – If the flood is too deep for your vehicle, turn back and find another route.

Your vehicle can stall and will not start again if your engine and electronics under the bonnet become wet. Please consider this and avoid taking risks on flooded roads.

If the water isn’t too deep proceed with caution, keep your speed low and drive in the shallowest part of the water, normally in the centre or the highest part of the road and remember once you are through the flooded area to check your brakes are working as a build of water can cause your brakes to slip which means they will be less effective when stopping.