Earlier today I viewed a few photos added by friends on Facebook sharing their experiences in both congested traffic and flooded roads. One of my friends captured the scene of a flooded road on the way to Petrusburg in the Free State.
She works for Business Outsurance and decided to turn around rather than risk proceeding on this road and having to return later to Bloemfontein. This might be a very wise move – and a move to be considered by more vehicle owners!
Unfortunately many of the roads in rural areas are not in such a condition that they can be trusted. Potholes filled with water have increased in size as they have taken a battering from the heavy weight of trucks and other vehicles that have driven across the already weakened road surface.
Smaller bridges have also been swept away by flood waters and in the North West motorists have been warned to consider some alternative roads.
Some of our motorists cannot avoid driving in heavy rains – We would like to assist by sharing some advice from the Arrive Alive website about Safe Driving in Heavy rains:
General Tips when driving in Rain:
* Use the two- second rule to maintain a safe distance from the car in front of you.
* If it is raining and the roads are wet, slow down. Take your foot off the accelerator and let your speed drop gradually. Never use the brakes suddenly because this may cause the car to skid.
* If you find that an oncoming vehicle is overtaking from the opposite direction and will not be likely to do it safely, slow down and be prepared to move to the left shoulder if necessary.
* Beware of oil patches. Don’t panic. Do not jam on your brakes, just steer through. In most cases, the patches will be small.
* Always change to a lower gear before you take a bend, especially a sharp bend. Your speed should be at its slowest as you enter the bend and both your hands should be on the steering wheel. This slow in/fast out technique gives you most control when driving around a bend.
* Increase your space cushion by doubling your normal following distance from two seconds to four seconds.
* Turn on your headlights.
* Be careful of other vehicles to the rear and in blind spot areas as they are especially difficult to see through rain-spattered windows.
* Use your low-beam headlights to see and be seen. Wait a short time after the rain begins before using your windshield wipers because the blades may smear.
* Be extra careful during the first half hour after rain begins. Grime and oil on the road surface mix with water to make the road slippery.
* Only drive when you have to!!!
Insurance and Driving in Heavy rains
We would like to alert drivers to be cautious when driving in rain.The wrong decision could impact on their car insurance as well…
The Ombudsman has recently warned that engine damage from driving through deep water might not be covered in most car insurance policies.