posted 5 years ago

IAM Driving Tips – Heavy Rain

Institute of Advanced Motorists Driver Training Specialist, Simon Elstow, has some straightforward tips to help motorists cope with heavy rain.

Institute of Advanced Motorists Driver Training Specialist, Simon Elstow, has some straightforward tips to help motorists cope with heavy rain. His advice is:

- Before you set off, set your heater controls – rain makes the windows mist up in seconds. You don’t want to be fiddling with controls when you should be concentrating on the road.

- Slow down. In the rain your stopping distance should be at least doubled. Giving yourself more space helps you to avoid spray, especially when following a large vehicle.

- Keep your eyes on the road ahead and plan your driving so that you can brake, accelerate and steer smoothly – harsh manoeuvres will unbalance the car.

- If you have cruise control, avoid using it on wet roads – it may create problems if you start to aquaplane.

- See and be seen. Put your lights on – as a rule of thumb, whenever you need to use your wipers you should also turn your headlights on, and before overtaking put your wipers on their fastest setting.

- Making sure your car is properly maintained will make a difference too. Check your wipers regularly, that your tyres are properly inflated and have enough tread, and that all of your lights work and are clean. By law, you must keep the windscreen washer filled, but remember, to keep your windows clean, you must do the inside as well.

Mr Elstow said: "There’s nothing quite like getting to your car in the rain. It’s a haven from the elements. But be cautious, especially after prolonged dry spells – rain on a dry road is dangerously slippery. And think about the people on the pavements – remember it is illegal to splash pedestrians.”