In Queensland, we have to deal with a lot of unpredictable weather. In the matter of only hours, we can witness beautiful sunshine transforming into sudden downpour overfilling our gutters and drains. Driving in wet weather can be extremely dangerous, which is why you should always know how to navigate it.
How to prepare for Queensland’s wet season
As Queenslanders, we experience regular wet seasons thanks to our subtropical climate. Whilst we usually see the most rainfall from December to February, sudden wet weather can often occur all the way to mid-April. Throughout this season, you should prepare your vehicle for driving and conduct basic maintenance checks. This includes making sure you have good tyre threads, all your vehicle’s lights work correctly and that your windscreen is clean each time you decide to go for a drive.
How to drive safely during general wet weather
You should always plan your drive before heading out on long road trips. This usually involves looking at the weather forecast. However, weather can change dramatically in the matter of a short time and you may sometimes find yourself in the middle of a storm. If this is the case, there are certain safety road rules that you should follow.
Exercising extreme caution if heavy rain comes right after a long period of dry weather
After a long dry spell, residue such as debris and engine oil build up on the road. When there’s heavy downfall, the roads become more slippery than usual, increasing the risk of skidding.
Turn your headlights on
When it rains, visibility is lower. By turning your headlights on, you are not only increasing your range of vision, but are also helping other drivers see you. It also helps you to keep an eye out for pedestrians and cyclists on the road.
Allow for more brake time
To allow for more break time, you need to double the distance between the vehicle in front of you. In good weather, you should be driving at least two seconds behind the vehicle in front of you. So when it rains, you should be extending that time to four seconds.
Stay away from puddles on the side of the road
It’s often hard to judge the depth of a puddle when it’s raining. If you can’t gauge how deep it is, you should avoid it. When driving through a puddle, you run the risk of damaging your vehicle’s internal electrical systems.
Navigating flooded roads
Driving through flooded roads is extremely dangerous and leads to numerous fatalities each year. You should always abide by the saying ‘If it’s flooded, forget it!’. If you spot flash flooding on the road, turn back and wait for the water to subside.
If you follow these tips closely next time it rains, you shouldn’t find yourself in any kind of trouble next time you’re driving in wet weather!