Motorists warned about heavy rains

By Drum Digital
20 January 2016

By Nomzamo Ngcobo

It’s that time of the year when roads are often wet due to heavy rainfall. Therefore road users are urged to be cautious during wet weather.

ER24 spokesperson Chitra Bodasing says driving in these conditions increases the chance of being involved in a collision. “Remember that rain affects visibility.

Visibility of vehicles, pedestrians, the road, road signs and possible dangers such as potholes and items that are swept onto the road might be hindered during these conditions,” she says.

Safety tips for driving on wet roads:

• Ensure that your windscreen wipers are in good, working condition.

• Before driving, listen to weather and traffic reports. There might be heavy downpours, flooding or certain roads might be closed to traffic. These reports will help you decide if you should continue your journey or rather wait.

• Ensure you put your headlights on. Pay close attention to what is happening around you and keep a safe following distance.

• Don’t speed. Avoid breaking or accelerating harshly, you could easily lose control of the vehicle in wet weather.

• Don’t be impatient while driving. Driving to your destination in these conditions might take longer but rather get to your destination safely instead of rushing and risking your life others’ lives.

• Avoid driving through puddles, flowing water and waterlogged bridges. You could damage the vehicle or be swept away in it, depending on circumstances.

• Remember that heavy downpours or storms can result in trees being uprooted, tree branches being broken and other dangerous items flowing into the road. Ensure that you pay attention while driving and avoid areas that you cannot assess for possible dangers.

• If visibility is bad, rather pull over in a safe area, if possible, and wait for the rain to ease up. Remember to keep your headlights and hazard lights on.

• Remember that oil and other dirt is washed off the road when it rains. This poses a danger to motorists as the roads become slippery. Drive with caution at all times.

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