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Understanding How to Drive Safely in Bad Weather

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In Houston, October and November are the end of the wet season, and can cause flooding and other dangerous road conditions. Driving in any condition is a risk and especially so in bad weather. If you do decide to drive in poor conditions, perhaps these tips can help you stay safe on the road.

#1 Tip: Avoid Hydroplaning

Heavy rain can affect visibility and braking distance. Slowing down ensure your tires maintain steady contact with the road and can help lower the chances of hydroplaning. When a car skids on a wet road it is called hydroplaning. This usually occurs when braking quickly at high speeds on wet roads. Hydroplaning can even occur when rain is just beginning to fall and mixes with oily residues left on roadways creating a slippery surface. It can cause a complete lack of control and is a very common contributing factor to accidents.

The best way to avoid hydroplaning is to drive slowly and do regular maintenance on your tires. If you find yourself hydroplaning, the best solution is to ease off the accelerator until you can regain traction. If you need to break, do so slowly, while the car regain maneuverability. Usually, trying to steer on the wheel will only make the car more unstable.

#2 Tip: Turn Away from Floodwaters

Flooding is one of the greatest weather risks for Southeast Texas. Even a few inches of water can cause your car to lose complete traction. One or two feet of water can easily carry away a truck or SUV. Do not risk it. If you see barricades blocking off areas of the city, or even just pools of water covering the road, do not try to drive through them.

It is better to avoid a flood and find another route to your destination than risk causing an accident, or even drowning. Be mindful of weather conditions and how they may affect your route. If you know the area, avoid places without adequate drainage where water can pool.

Tip #3: Be Careful about Icy Roads

Winter doesn’t get too cold in Houston, but if it’s been rainy and the temperature drops below freezing there could be ice on the roads. Look at your car’s thermometer and see if it is below 32 degrees. If you are concerned about ice on the road, drive slowly and apply your brakes slowly.

Bad weather can cause safety issues on the roads. Be prepared and know how to deal with common inclement weather in your area.

If you are ever involved in a car crash, reach out to our Houston area lawyers for a free case review. Give us a call at (888) 273-1045.

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