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Overview of hazardous driving situations

Kevin Thorpe | Wednesday 20th November 2019 4:30pm

Right hand side of car on road

Most journeys that we make in our vehicles are usually straightforward. Usually, your trip will go smoothly with limited drama. However, every time you drive, youíll be faced with potentially dangerous situations that youíll need to react to. Continue reading to find out more about what you can do to stay sage on the roads.

Animals running into the road

Being faced with an animal running into the road is a particularly difficult driving experience. You need to make sure that youíre aware of your surroundings before making any decisions. The best thing to do is to apply your brakes and hold the steering wheel securely. Make sure that you donít swerve out of your lane as this could cause danger to other road users. Hopefully the animal will move out of the way once youíve applied the brakes.

Driving in snowy conditions

Winter can cause hazardous conditions for drivers. It is important to ensure that your vehicle is prepared for winter and you have appropriate tyres fitted. In the UK, all-season tyres are a good tyre choice for countries with mild climates. These tyres combine the attributes of summer and winter tyres to make a tyre that is appropriate for winter and summer driving. Tyres such as Continentalís AllSeasonContactô tyres  offer drivers an alternative from the hassle of switching between summer and winter tyres.

If youíre driving in snow, itís important to take extra care. Driving as slowly and smoothly as possible will ensure that your car retains its grip on thre roads. Try not to accelerate or brake too harshly as this can lead to potential accidents. If you feel your car sliding, steer into the slide to correct it. Itís also important to make sure youíre leaving enough space between your vehicle and those in front of you. Itís always better to allow too much space rather than not enough as this gives you more time to react to hazards.

Coping with aquaplaning

In the colder and wetter months, there is also an increased risk of aquaplaning. This occurs when your vehicle hits a body of water. If the tread on your tyres is unable to remove water from the road quickly enough, your vehicle will lose traction. You will lose the ability to steer or brake as your vehicle doesnít have enough contact with the road.

When your tread depth is reduced, your tyresí ability to disperse water becomes significantly reduced. Your tread levels have a significant impact on your chances of aquaplning. The lower your tread depth, the greater your chances of aquaplaning. If you feel your vehicle aquaplaning, take your foor off the accelerator, press the clutch and avoid making any sudden movements of either the steering wheel or your brakes.

Fitting the right tyres reduces stopping distances

Stopping distances are incredibly important in hazardous driving situations and can make the difference between having an accident and avoiding one so make sure that you leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you. Your tyre choice is also important in helping to avoid accidents.

Pre journey checks

Many people enjoy long road trips; especially over the festive period when many people are driving home for Christmas. Before setting off on a long journey, you should check the pressures and tread depth of your tyres. You should also check other elements of your car such as fuel and oil levels to ensure that you get to your destination safely. You can find more pre-road trip checks here.

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