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How to Drive Safely in the Rain

Driving in the rain can be a scary thing, and in the night, it is even worse. It is difficult to see out of the window, and the other car's lights seems to make it worse. Especially when you begin to hydroplane! Here are some tips to avoid getting into an accident while it's raining.


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    Keep both hands on the steering wheel at all times! Keep all distractions, such as cell phones or even the radio, off and away from you. While focus to your front do Take a Look in Back View Mirror as well Right Hand side & Left Hand side so that you get an 360 degree over view what is happening around any mud slide or falling tree, electric pole, hanging electrical wires , or in coming hazard etc
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    Turn on your headlights. Many states in the U.S. require headlights when it's raining, even in broad daylight. This will make it easier for you to see what is in front of you; thus, preventing any accidents.
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    Keep a minimum of a good five car length from the car in front of you. You never know what other drivers are going to do or what could happen to you! If that feels too close or too far a rule of thumb is 1 second of following distance per 10 mph (16 km/h). That holds true especially in bad weather.
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    Drive at or below the speed limit to the extent that you are comfortable with, and can see far enough in front of you to appropriately make driving decisions.
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    Be aware that the maximum speed at which you can drive is DIRECTLY related to your tires. Be sure to know what their condition is in. Radial tires have better traction than the old bias ply polyester tires, but even they lose their ability to grip wet pavement and channel water out as the tread wears out.
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    Be aware of hydroplaning. This is where your vehicle travels on top of the water and has NO or very little contact with the ground. Your traction is reduced significantly. To safely get out of a hydroplaning situation let off the gas and steer straight or slightly in the direction you must go. Do not make sudden motions and remain calm.
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    Avoid flooded roads. Never drive through standing or flowing water in a road way unless you have no choice or you are able to follow someone else to judge the depth of the water. Flooding the engine of your car can cause the engine to stall, and deep water can actually float your car and take it off the roadway.
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    Turn on the defroster if the windshield begins to fog. In hot, muggy weather, air conditioned air (which cannot contain as much moisture) will usually clear the inside of the windshield faster than non air conditioned.
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    Be aware that brakes can be affected by water. Wet drum type brakes are especially prone to decreased stopping power after driving through deep water.
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    Watch for splashing from potholes and pools of water that accumulate at clogged storm drain pipes and low areas of the pavement. Highways also develop "ruts" where the heaviest traffic tracks, and you may be able to position your vehicle while remaining in your lane to avoid these.
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    Use a rain repellent product on side windows and mirrors to clear standing raindrops .
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    Beware of driving in the rain, especially at night. Motorcycles or even other dark-colored cars can be camouflaged amongst glistening raindrops on side windows and mirrors. It's best to have a light colored car that isn't easily camouflaged in the night.


  • Change your windshield wipers when they begin to streak or seem to lose their effectiveness. Even in dry climates where they are seldom used, the ultraviolet from sunshine breaks the rubber down, so never assume because you seldom use them they are not worn out.
  • Stay calm.
  • Keep your eyes on the road at all times.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • In blinding rain on the highway, you may be tempted to turn on your emergency flashers, but their purpose is to alert other drivers you are stopped, and this can cause some confusion, so unless the situation becomes dangerous, you may want to forgo doing this. It is always preferable to pull over if the visibility is reduced to the point you cannot see!
  • Headlights are important for visibility, but more importantly so other drivers can see you on the road! It becomes difficult to judge where vehicles are if they are missing one headlight, even more so in reduced visibility situations!
  • Keep your windshield clean on the inside and outside, so visibility is as clear as conditions allow.
  • Drive as safely and calmly as you can.
  • Try inducing skids in clear parking lots to practice so you know what to expect.
  • If you can't see anything, look out your window and stop at any gas station until the rain has stopped.
  • Don't use cruise control in the rain. It can hinder your ability to safely control the vehicle if you hydroplane.


  • If it's really hard rain and you just can't see, no matter what the setting of your windshield wipers are, pull over! You may end up in an accident if you're not able to see.
  • Don't try to speed up, slow down, or change direction while hydroplaning. Wait until you've stopped hydroplaning to make corrections.
  • Do not use your Cruise Control in rain or snow! If your vehicle begins to hydroplane while you're using cruise control, your car's computer might read that the extra power it is sending to your tires isn't bringing the car to the set speed, so it will keep spinning the tires faster and faster. Most newer vehicles will detect a discrepancy between wheel speeds and disengage the cruise control instead, but even this can cause an unexpected and sudden change in power application and still exacerbate the situation.
  • Remember: Your tires are your car's only contact with the road. Worn tires greatly affect handling, inclusive of accelerating, braking, and turning, and in all conditions.
  • Never stop in the roadway. Pull to the side if you must, but always try to stop in a parking lot.

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Categories: Defensive Driving Skills & Safety | Driving Basics