Slippery conditions and blurred vision due to downpours are the main causes for traffic accidents during the rainy season. however, in Nigeria, bad roads especially when it rains can contribute to road accidents. Therefore, extreme caution has to be taken when traveling on the roads during this time. Here are some precautions you can take to stay safe this season.
Replace worn wipers.
Wipers are designed specifically to wipe off water from the windscreen and enable the driver to see more clearly. But over time, due to the constant friction between the wiper blades and the windscreen, the blades- the thin flap that rubs back and forth against the screen- gets worn and that reduces their effectiveness. Bad or worn wipers do not wipe water off the screen well enough and can be a serious cause of accident when it rains. Replace them immediately you notice that they no longer work efficiently.
Replace cracked or broken windscreen.
Have you ever looked through a broken or cracked windscreen? Absent of rain, driving with a cracked windscreen is dangerous enough as the cracks can distort vision especially if they criss-cross directly in front of the driver. Driving with cracked windscreen in the rain increases the possibility of a road accident.
Replace bad or dim headlamps.
Double check to ensure that your headlamps are able to cope with heavy downpour of rain, especially at night. Bad headlamps impair visibility at night as drivers would not be able to see far ahead, reducing the amount of time you may have to respond to danger.
Replace worn tires.
You don’t want to be caught out in the rain with a worn tire, or with a treadless tire. Ageing or worn tires can be an issue when it rains and they could also cause serious problems for you. Since water on the road reduces the traction of the tires, driving with worn out tires makes braking to a halt get even more difficult.
Reduce speed and avoid overspeeding.
There are tons of last minute distractions that may distract you when you are driving in the rain. Sprays from your car’s tires or from other vehicles, fallen tree branches, or parked vehicles are some of such distractions. Going at high speed makes it very difficult to avoid crashing as the tires have reduced traction due to the presence of water on the road. By driving at a reduced speed, you are giving yourself ample time to react to sudden occurrences.
Use your Air Conditioners to avoid build up of mist.
Mist builds up on the windscreen when it rains as a result of the changes in temperature both within and outside the vehicle. One of the easiest ways to prevent the mist build up is to turn on your car’s air conditioner.
Keep your eyes on the road and hands on the wheel
In addition to 100% attention when driving in the rain, you should also keep both hands on the steering wheel at all times. Completely avoid other activities such as snacking, texting or singing along to your favorite song on the radio. This is so you have complete control of your vehicle to handle any situations that may arise due to the impaired vision and slippery conditions on the road.
In conclusion, remember that the weather is unpredictable and rain storms and thunderstorms alike can strike without a moment’s notice. It is therefore important to take all necessary precautions especially during the rainy season.