Recent weeks have been a horrid time for drivers up and down the country, with storm after storm hitting the UK and leading to widespread flooding and many routes becoming completely waterlogged and impassable to all vehicles.
It’s now almost expected that the end of winter brings such poor weather with it, but the nation doesn’t stop just because there’s a bit of rain. Indeed, millions of drivers continue to take to the roads each day, but with further bad weather on the way, it’s important for all road users to have their wits about them.
Vigilance is key when the conditions deteriorate
According to road safety and breakdown specialist GEM Motoring Assist, the sheer volume of rain that has fallen in recent weeks means many roads are extremely treacherous at present.
GEM road safety officer Neil Worth commented: “Strong winds, accompanied by persistent heavy rain, have brought down many trees and weakened others in recent weeks. We urge all road users to be vigilant, as there is now the risk of many more trees falling, even with lighter winds.
“Pay particular attention in wooded areas and on twisting country lanes where it’s difficult to predict what might be round the next bend.”
Indeed, storm weather brings a whole host of hazards that motorists must be aware of, including slick surfaces covered in mud and leaves, through to blocked drains and gullies that mean surface water is unable to drain away.
What should you do when bad weather hits?
There are some simple tips that can help to ensure all drivers are keeping themselves as safe as possible when faced with bad weather during their journeys.
Firstly, make sure you have good visibility and can be seen by other road users by turning on your lights. Remember, it’s absolutely essential that you can both see and be seen when visibility is limited due to heavy rain.
Next, the aftermath of storm with strong winds and heavy rainfall can mean roads are littered with debris and this can impact your vehicle’s grip. Remember to reduce your speed accordingly when the conditions are less than ideal.
And finally, freezing conditions and harsh weather means many roads continue to suffer from the blight of potholes. Be sure to avoid these as best as possible – as you never know how deep they go – but if you do hit a pothole, always check your vehicle for damage and report the hazard using the government’s reporting system so it can be flagged to be fixed.
Heather Stark, brand manager at The Fuelcard People, comments: “Heavy rainfall, strong winds and flooding are now part and parcel of the UK winter. As a result, every driver who takes to the roads at this time of year should appreciate the dangers that this weather brings and understand how to stay safe.”