Spring is finally here. Which, in many places—like Mobile, Ala., and Hilo, Hawaii, two of the rainiest cities in the country—can mean more frequent encounters with wet or slick roads. Knowing how to prevent hydroplaning (when you lose traction and skid on wet roads)—and react if you do skid—can help you stay safe on the roads this season.
Here are some tips to follow:
To navigate wet roads:
• Slow down, by at least 5 miles an hour.
• Give the vehicle in front of you twice as much room as you usually do.
• If it’s raining heavily, pull over to a safe spot and wait until it slows.
• Remember that roads are most slippery during the first 10 to 15 minutes of a storm, especially if it follows a dry spell. In this case, the rain will mix with oil, dirt and other material that has built up on the road.
To regain traction if you hydroplane:
• Steer in the direction of the skid.
• Ease off the gas.
• Follow these braking guidelines:
o For antilock brakes: Apply the brakes firmly; don’t pump them.
o For an automatic transmission: Lightly apply the brakes.
o For a manual transmission: Push in the clutch and let your car slow down on its own.
For more tips like these, visit our Driving Safety page.
The information in this blog may vary based on your particular state or situation. Always refer to your insurance policy for your specific coverages.