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AAA gives tips to those driving in heavy rain and storms

Spring storms will bring heavy rains and strong winds, which create dangerous driving conditions, with little to no visibility. AAA urges motorists to heed official warnings and stay off the roads, if possible.

“While it isn’t advised, if you must get behind the wheel during the storm, it is very important to adjust your typical driving style,” said Montrae Waiters, spokeswoman, AAA - The Auto Club Group. “Whether it’s during or after the storm, if you see a flooded street, don’t drive through it! Driving through standing water is especially dangerous, because you never know just how deep the water is or what you are driving over.”

AAA urges drivers in the path of the storm to prepare their vehicle and follow the advice of local officials.

Driving Safety Tips:

Check traffic and weather conditions before heading out.

Always wear your safety belt.

Rainy conditions can cause low visibility: Turn on your headlights to help you see better and to allow other motorists to spot you. Avoid using your high beams because you could blind other drivers and the extra light will reflect off the rain, causing more of a distraction for you.

If you can’t see the edges of the road or other vehicles at a safe distance while driving during wet weather, pull off the road as far as you can and wait for the rain to ease up. Make sure to turn on emergency flashers to alert other drivers when stopped but not while driving as it is a distraction to fellow motorists.

Avoid standing water and flooded roads at all times. There is no way to tell how deep standing water is on a flooded road and driving through it can cause a vehicle to stall and result in severe damage to the vehicle from:

Flooding the engine

Warping brake rotors

Loss of power steering

Short in electrical components

If your vehicle stalls in a flooded area, do not remain in the car. Abandon it as soon as possible and seek higher ground. Flood waters can elevate quickly, sweeping away the vehicle and its occupants.

Traffic Signal Blackout: If traffic signal lights are not working due to power failure, you must stop at the intersection and then proceed when you know other turning and approaching vehicles, bicycles, or pedestrians have stopped. A blacked-out traffic signal works the same as a four-way stop intersection.

Driving Safely in Strong Winds

Anticipate gusts - Pay attention when driving through areas prone to strong winds or when weather reports forecast severe weather.

Firmly grip the steering wheel. Know your vehicle. Light cars, vans and other “boxy” vehicles are more likely to be blown by strong gusts of wind.

Increase space between your vehicle and other motorists, especially vans, recreational vehicles and cars pulling trailers which may be adversely affected by the wind.

Drive in these conditions only when absolutely necessary.


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