If April showers bring May flowers, we are approaching the season of wet weather in Ohio. Although most driving safety tips focus on snow and ice, heavy rain can be just as dangerous for motorists. The U.S. Federal Highway Administration reports that wet pavement is a main cause of crashes in which the driver loses control of the vehicle and cannot stay in the lane or on the road.
Protect yourself from serious injury with these safety tips for driving in the rain:
Turn on your headlights
All 50 states require drivers to use their headlights when windshield wipers are in use. Failure to do so not only limits your visibility, but it also makes it more difficult for other drivers to see you, increasing the risk for collision. Always replace burnt-out headlights and taillights before driving in the rain.
Check your tires
Without enough tread, your car’s tires will have trouble maintaining solid contact with the pavement. If you are unsure, put a penny into the tread with Lincoln’s head first. If you can still see his face, it is time for new tires. In addition, make sure your windshield wiper blades are in good working order. Replace those that have worn out, cracked or do not effectively clear moisture from the glass.
Steer clear of cruise control
While most modern vehicles have cruise control, using it during wet weather can increase your risk of losing control of the vehicle. Save this feature for sunny days and clear conditions.
Keep a safe following distance
Leave twice the space you normally would from the car in front of you when weather conditions are bad. Slamming on the brakes on wet roads can cause hydroplaning, in which tires skid on as little as a half-inch of water and lose the traction needed to drive safely.
Taking these steps can reduce your chances of a serious auto accident in wet weather. If you suffer an injury in a crash in which another driver was at fault, you may be eligible for legal damages.