In view of the rains and flooding that have devastated some of our communities in the past week, here are some safety tips for driving on wet roads. These tips were culled from the Arkansas Driver's License Manual. You may want to pass these tips along to your fleet drivers as a friendly reminder.
When it is raining or the road is wet, most tires have good traction up to about 35 mph. However, as you move faster, your tires will start to ride up on the water, much like water skis. This is called "hydroplaning." In a heavy rain, your tires can lose all traction with the road at around 50 mph. Bald or badly worn tires will lose traction at much lower speed. The best way to keep from hydroplaning is to drive slower in the rain, or when the road is wet.
If it feels like your tires have lost traction with the surface of the road you should:
- Ease your foot off the gas pedal
- Keep the steering wheel straight. Only try to turn if it's an emergency. If you must turn, do it slowly, or you will cause your vehicle to skid
- Do not try to stop or turn until your tires are gripping the road again.