In many parts of the country, the fall brings with it damp and wet weather. Wet weather skidding crashes are something fleet drivers need to keep in mind and learn how to avoid. Over a 10-year period, 12.6% of fatal crashes in the U.S. occurred on wet pavement, according to the Federal Highway Administration.
With autumn leaves falling and sticking to slick road surfaces, there is reduced traction and the result can be a skid, slide or fishtailing. When a vehicle skids, the driver is no longer in control. However, the driver’s actions prior to the skidding incident can make a big difference in the end result. Fatigue, panic or distracted driving can cause a driver to overcompensate and make matters worse.
Now is the time to remind your fleet to get enough rest and to avoid all distractions behind the wheel—and be cognizant of slick roadways. In the event they do lose control of their vehicle during a skid, here are the steps experts recommend in order to safely recover:
- Look where you want to go
- Reduce power and speed
- Steer in the direction of the skid
- When the vehicle regains traction, pull out of the slide
- Pull over to the shoulder and take a deep breath before getting back on route.