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13 survival tips for monsoon driving

2014-03-05 05:45

WATCH THAT DISTANCE! Leave an extra few seconds between your car and the vehicle ahead - it's a life-saver. Image: SHUTTERSTOCK

Hi Gauteng, tired of the rain? Driving in rain requires extreme caution and people should adapt their driving habits to ensure their safety on the road. Take 10mins to read these 13 tips from experts to avoid a collision - or even drowning.

John October from Dial Direct Insurance advises: "Roads become slick in rain so drivers must adapt their driving style, speed, following distance, settings on their vehicle and be prepared for an emergency.

"It’s also imperative to ensure you vehicle is in good enough condition for the weather."


He conceded that driving in heavy traffic at a snail's pace on a slick road while rain pummels your car can be a test of endurance but urges motorists to be patient, "to take it easy".
“Expect and be prepared for delays. Try to be patient, allow extra travel time," he suggested. "It is also helpful to listen to the traffic reports for updates on floods and collisions. If your route is affected, find an another - or park until it is safe to continue."
Always turn on your vehicle’s headlights in wet weather.
In heavy rain use the brighter setting for your car’s tail lights.
3  Make sure your wiper blades are in good condition and do a clean sweep.
Do not allow the inside of your car's windows to mist up. Switch on front and rear screen demisters and your aircon - yes, an aircon dries the air and removes mist almost instantly.
Check your tyres' tread: the legal minimum is 1mm but if you value your life more than the law, make sure there is at least treble that.
6  Worn shock-absorbers don't keep the rubber hard down on the road; no road contact = no ABS, no grip and very little braking.
7  Cloudy and rain = poor visibility. Take extra care when overtaking - and remember not all drivers coming towards you will have their headlights on. They are the stupid ones.
8  Adjust speed and following distance; at least six seconds to the car ahead. Ensure you can stop within the visible area ahead.
9  Avoid abrupt acceleration, braking and steering = avoiding a skid.
10 Don't drive through deep water. It could cost you your car - possibly your life.
11  If you have no option but to drive through such water then drive slowly in a low gear, holding the steering wheel steady.
12  After driving in heavy rain touch the brakes a few times to dry them - especially your vehicle has drum brakes.
13  If you have car trouble turn on your hazard lights and get completely off the road. If possible, ensure that you have a reflective warnng triangle to erect some distance behind your car

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