With the summer months upon us, many people are going to be taking to the streets for road trips with their loved ones. And while the summertime is a great time to take a vacation, it is also a time where big summer storms are common.
Especially if you live in or are visiting a part of the world that has severe summer weather, it’s important that you know what you do if you stumble upon a storm while you’re driving on the highway or freeway. To help you with this, here are three tips for road tripping during summer storms.
Cut Your Distractions Down To Zero
While being distracted in the car at all is generally a bad move, when the weather gets bad and the smallest little thing could send you careening into a car accident, it’s more important than ever not to let distractions keep you from focusing on the road entirely.
To help reduce these distractions, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends that you take measures like keeping your cell phone away from you, not eating or drinking anything while you’re behind the wheel, turning off any music or movies that might be playing throughout the car, and asking your passengers to keep calm and quiet. While these things won’t necessarily help you to avoid a car accident, they will allow you to give the road your complete and undivided attention.
Know How To Prevent Hydroplaning
One of the biggest dangers of being on the road during a summer rainstorm is that of hydroplaning. Hydroplaning happens when there’s standing water on the road that you drive over without hitting the actual road. This can cause you to lose control of the vehicle. To avoid this, it’s vital that you know how to prevent hydroplaning from happening.
According to Jim Gorzelany, a contributor to Forbes.com, the best thing you can do to prevent hydroplaning is to take extreme caution when there’s standing water on the road. Slow down and try not to drive right through puddles. If you do feel like you’re starting to lose control, keep steering in the direction you want to go and ease up off the gas. Don’t slam on the brakes or you might get yourself in even more trouble.
Increase Your Following Distance More Than Usual
Whenever you’re on the road, especially if you’re traveling at high speeds like you frequently do during road trips, it’s important that you keep a safe following distance. But when the weather is stormy, that following distance becomes even more vital.
Julie Lee, a contributor to the Huffington Post, recommends that you try to increase your following distance to four or more seconds. By doing this, you’ll give yourself enough time to react if the vehicle in front of you run into trouble.
If you have a road trip planned for this summer, consider using the tips mentioned above to prepare yourself for driving through some crazy summer storms.