We all love the “pit, pit, patter of the raindrops”; the weather cools down, the air smells fresh and clean…but with more rains comes more responsibility – driving responsibility. When commuting in the rain, we have to be extra careful of everything, especially with the state of our city roads and traffic. Here’s a couple of reminders for that little extra precaution.
Check your tyres!
Make it a habit to check your tyre condition before you leave. Do the one rupee coin test to check if your tyres need replacing. If your tyre tread is below the minimum depth of 2 mm, it’s time to change your tyre. When driving in the rain, if your tyre tread is worn down, there is no place for the water to be dispelled out, which leads to loss of traction with the road. This can cause your car to start hydroplaning.
Inspect everything at least once before you set out. Check your brakes, your windshield wipers, and your fuel level. Check that your headlights, fog lights and blinkers work. You don’t want any of these failing if you get stuck in a heavy downpour.
We get it; you want to get off the wet roads, out of traffic and to your destination. But that doesn’t mean you need to risk your own and everyone else’s safety. It’s always the right choice to drive slower than your usual pace during the rainy season for the simple fact that it takes longer for your car to slow down on wet roads. Braking doesn’t guarantee that your car will stop on time. Wet roads are extremely slippery, making it difficult to get enough traction to stop.
Traffic is bad on regular days, but on rainy days, it’s gonna be worse. Always plan ahead and give yourself ample travel time to get to your scheduled day.
Light it up!
It’s always advisable to turn on your headlights – on low beam only – when driving in rainy conditions. This will let other drivers know you’re there when visibility is low.
Sink or Swim?
Well, in this case, don’t do either! Avoid flooded roads as much as possible. All your electronic systems and controls will be put at risk. Not to say if there is a pothole under all that water, your car is more than likely to get stuck in the ditch. Never try to drive through water that is higher than the bottom of your doors.
Always, always have an emergency kit in your car at all times; extra clothes, shoes, flashlights, tools and even some non-perishable food. You never know when you might need them.