Safety first - nine tips for driving in rain

Aquaplaning can be dangerous
Aquaplaning can be dangerous
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Drivers are being urged to take care on the roads if they get caught in a sudden April shower.

The motoring experts at LeaseVan.co.uk have put together their top tips for driving in wet conditions during spring.

They suggest slowing down on wet roads and making sure there is adequate stopping distance to avoid unnecessary incidences.

Other advice includes making sure tyres have sufficient grip, pulling over and stopping in a safe place if the downpours are particularly heavy and driving with dipped headlights on.

The experts also recommend being mindful of other road users – motorists could be subject to a fine of up to £1000 if they splash a pedestrian.

Tim Alcock from LeaseVan.co.uk said: “Drivers always need to be cautious of changing weather conditions throughout the year but during Spring, heavy April showers can pose a big risk.

“If drivers get caught out, top priority is to slow down, leave plenty of stopping room and make sure the car windscreen is kept mist free to help with visibility.

“Visibility can be quickly reduced during a sudden downpour and if there’s somewhere safe to pullover and wait out the shower, then it’s often worth doing. Wipers can struggle to keep up with heavy rain.

“Drivers also need to be mindful of other road users, the risks caused by flooded routes and excess surface water.”

Here are LeaseVan.co.uk’s tips for driving in April showers.

1. Vehicle maintenance

Check your tyres and make sure they’re properly inflated and have good tread to grip on slippery road surfaces.

2. Stopping distance

It takes longer to stop when the roads are wet and slippery. Allow at least double the usual separation distance between you and the car in front.

3. Slow down

Keep your speed down when driving in showers. Wipers struggle to keep up in a heavy downpour so your visibility will be reduced. Drive slower and you’ll have more time to react to hazards.

4. Put your lights on

Use dipped headlights so other road users can see you.

5. Stop

If the shower is really heavy and visibility is poor, pull over somewhere safe and wait out the rain.

6. Flooded roads

If the April showers are heavy, you may find yourself on flooded roads. If it looks too deep stop, turn round in a safe place and find an alternative route.

7. Aquaplaning

This happens when your tyres lose traction from the road. Roads with lots of surface water pose the biggest risk. Reducing your speed will help.

8. Pedestrians and cyclists

Be mindful of other people on the road, particularly cyclists and pedestrians. If you splash a pedestrian, you could face a fine of anything from £100 to £5,000.

9. Steamed up car

Make sure any heat is going straight on to your windscreen to stop it getting misted up and to keep visibility good.