When it rains, it pours: safety tips for driving in the rain

  • Published
  • By Tech Sgt. Shaundana Vernon
  • 82nd Training Wing Safety Office
There are several tips to keep in mind when there's a downpour and it's windy out, and you're required to brave the storm and drive somewhere.

First, take precautionary measures. Allow for more travel time; keep in mind the traffic and the fact that you should be driving slower, or that your preplanned route may have to change.

Also, stay on top of your car's condition; its brakes, tire pressure and tread depth and wipers should be checked regularly so that you don't have to deal with it during a storm.

Remember to leave extra space, two or more car lengths, between you and the car in front of you. Brake earlier and with less force than you would normally. Not only does this increase the stopping distance between you and the car in front of you, it also lets the driver behind you know that you're slowing down.

Be more meticulous about using turn signals so that other drivers know your intentions. Take turns and curves with less speed than you would in dry conditions. Turn on your headlights, even when there's a light sprinkle. It helps you see the road, and more importantly, it helps other motorists see you.

Watch out for pedestrians that could be distracted in the rain. Raindrops deaden sound, so the usual audio clues for measuring car distances could become difficult to assess.

If it's raining so hard that you can't see the road or the car in front of you, pull over to a safe place and wait it out. As we have all seen lately, heavy rain and floods can happen all of a sudden. You might be in your vehicle when the next rain storm hits; be prepared, cautious and stay safe.