Driving and Skidding

Posted on by Defensive Driving Team | in Born to Drive

Can you imagine you are on your way to work and the roads are slick. Not only are your trying to maintain a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. Losing control of your car on wet pavement is a frightening experience. Skids are scary but hydroplaning is completely nerve-wracking.

Hydroplaning happens when the water in front of your tires builds up faster than your car’s weight can push it out of the way. The water pressure causes your car to rise up and slide on a thin layer of water between your tires. The most important thing to do if you are caught in the sitation is to remain calm and DO NOT slam on your brakes this causes your vehicle to spin. which can result in a crash.

Try using these safety tips if you find yourself caught in a skid:

  1. You can prevent skids by driving slowly and carefully, especially on curves. Steer and brake with a light touch. When you need to stop or slow, do not brake hard or lock the wheels and risk a skid. Maintain mild pressure on the brake pedal.
  2. If you do find yourself in a skid, remain calm, ease your foot off the gas, and carefully steer in the direction you want the front of the car to go. You must be prepared to turn the steering wheel again and again until the front of the vehicle is traveling in a straight line. For cars without anti-lock brakes, avoid using your brakes. If your car has ABS, brake firmly as you steer into the skid.
  3. Avoid hydroplaning by keeping your tires inflated correctly. Maintain good tire tread. Don’t put off replacing worn tires. Slow down when roads are wet, and stay away from puddles. Try to drive in the tire tracks left by the cars in front of you.
  4. If you find yourself hydroplaning, do not brake or turn suddenly. This could throw your car into a skid. Ease your foot off the gas until the car slows and you can feel the road again. If you need to brake, do it gently with light pumping actions. If your car has anti-lock brakes, then brake normally. The car’s computer will automatically pump the brakes much more effectively than a person can do.
  5. A defensive driver adjusts his or her speed to the wet road conditions in time to avoid having to use any of these measures.

We talk all the time about driving defensively. However, when you are driving and the weather conditions are not “normal” it is always important to remember that you have to drive not only for you but the other around you.

DefensiveDriving.Com offers a wide variety of clips and suggestions not only information on hydroplaning but how to jump start your battery to how to drive in ice and snow. Also for help with ticket dismissal and reduction on your insurance please check out www.defensivedriving.com.

-Kim

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