Thursday, May 13, 2010

Advice for road users in the event of Heavy Rainfall/Flooding

• It takes longer to stop a vehicle on wet roads so slow down and allow extra distance between you and the vehicle in front 4 seconds at a minimum.
• Take special care when driving behind goods vehicles as they generate a considerable amount of spray which reduces your visibility, hold back to where you can see their mirrors.
• Watch out for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.
• Use dipped headlights at all times of poor visibility not parking/side lights and fog lights.
• Driving in such conditions will result in reduced visibility. Use dipped headlights, not parking/side lights and fog lights.
• Don’t use fog lights, front or rear, unless visibility is reduced to less than 100 metres, roughly the length of a football pitch.
• Be mindful of surface water. You don’t know how deep it is or that it may contain hidden objects that could cause you to stall or damage your tyres.
• After going through water, drive slowly with your foot on the brake pedal for a short distance - this helps to dry the brakes.
• Be mindful of Aquaplaning on roads where 100/120kmh speeds apply.
• Aquaplaning occurs where the tyre thread fill with water and is unable to disperse it.
• When it happens you feel the steering wheel going light. Keep the wheels straight, ease off the accelerator and don’t brake.
• The vehicle will reduce speed through deceleration, the water will be dispersed and grip will return.
• Flooding and slippery road surfaces make driving particularly hazardous so always drive with care and caution. Expect the unexpected.
• Do not believe that all 4x4vehicles can go anywhere and so anything. E.g. fording rivers and driving through flood waters.

Pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists are advised to:
• Be seen. Wear bright clothing with reflective armbands or a reflective belt.
• Walk on a footpath, not in the street. Walk on the right hand side of the road, facing traffic if there are no footpaths.

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