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  • Writer's pictureClement Insurance

Tips for Driving Before & After a Storm

■ Plan an evacuation route – since flooding in the area can quickly make roads impassable; determine the best route

away from danger during a flood event.

■ Check federal, state and local websites for current road and weather conditions.

State Transportation Websites & National Weather Service

■ Pack an auto emergency kit. Include at a minimum: clean drinking water, several days’ supply of non-perishable

food, a first aid kit, well charged cellphone and charging source, flashlight with spare batteries, personal hygiene

supplies, battery powered radio.

■ Notify family members or friends of your intended route and expected time of arrival.

■ Don’t drive through fast-moving water; you and your vehicle could easily be swept away.

■ Don’t drive through water unless if you know it’s not too deep.

■ Once you determine it’s not too deep remember to:

□ Drive slowly and steadily to avoid creating a wake or wave.

□ Driving fast through standing water can damage the engine.

□ If the steering does become unresponsive ease off the accelerator and slow down gradually

□ Allow oncoming traffic to pass first

□ Test your brakes as soon as you can after leaving the water.

Tips to consider once on the road

Do not use cruise control in the rain. Using cruise control in the rain or even in snow or on ice is dangerous because if

your vehicle hydroplanes, it can make it worse by trying to keep your vehicle going at a constant speed.

■ Adjust your speed to the conditions.

■ Double the distance you leave between your car and the car in front of you, as stopping distances are increased

by wet roads.

■ Watch out for standing water, avoid it if you can.

■ If steering becomes unresponsive due to the rain, ease off the accelerator and slow down gradually.

■ If you experience hydroplaning, hold the steering wheel lightly and lift off the throttle until the tires regain their grip.

■ Turn on your headlights when visibility is reduced and when using windshield wipers.

■ Use of fog lights is helpful, but you must switch them off when visibility improves.

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