Advice on Driving in Heavy Rain
Here's what traffic experts say about navigating in the stormy weather we're having this week.
-- Slow down. (You need an expert to tell you this?) Not only is it more difficult to see, but also it takes more time to stop. You may not be able to calculate your stopping distance in particular situations.
-- Turn your lights on so other drivers get a better look at you.
-- Do your check list: Make sure the car windows and lights are clear before you start driving. Tires good? Wipers doing their job? Got jumper cables? You want to minimize the chances you'll be pulling over and spending a lot of time out of your car in this weather.
-- If your car has anti-lock brakes, don't pump them to slow down. Just apply stead pressure and let them do their job. (Another good reason to slow down and maintain a safe following distance.)
-- Use extreme caution passing a bus or truck. Conditions can change from monsoon to tsunami as you go by.
-- Be considerate of pedestrians. Slow down if you're in the curb lane so you don't spray the sidewalk.
-- Stick with a route you know. There are flash flood warnings across the region. Not all the roadway drains can handle downpours this intense. There's lots of standing water and it doesn't take as much as you think to overwhelm a car.
-- Avoid distractions. This is a good day to put the cell phone away and avoid personal grooming.
May 26, 2009; 7:40 AM ET
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