Dubai: Rainy weather can be a very serious problem as the reduced visibility makes it much more difficult to detect driving hazards, not to mention slippery roads. For better road safety, there are some things to watch out for when driving in the rain.
Follow our guide to make sure you drive safely:
Only drive if you have to
If you wake up on a rainy day, the best thing to do is text your boss (even a picture message) to let them know you’re going to be late. Your safety is the most important thing so wait for the rain to stop / reduce before you leave.
Listen to the traffic news on the radio or check #UAETraffic and #UAEWeather on Twitter before you go.
Stop at a gas station
If you are leaving home and everything is fine, but you encounter heavy rain along the way, slow down and stop at the next gas station and wait for the rain to stop. It can take from less than 15 minutes to about an hour. So grab some coffee and tell your boss you’ve stopped until it’s safe to continue your journey.
Is it worth it? If you are concerned about safety, call your boss
To slow down
Driving on a 120km / h road in the rain is dangerous and irresponsible. Reduce your speed to no more than 50 km / h and stay in the inside lane. If necessary, slow down to 40 km / h.
Be on your guard at all times.
Use low beam headlights
If you are driving in low visibility conditions, you should turn on your headlights. Make sure they are soaked (i.e. normal). Driving with the high beam headlights on (indicated by the blue symbol on your dashboard) is dangerous for oncoming traffic as it dazzles other motorists.
Never drive in the rain with your high beams on, and if your car has automatic headlights, make sure they are on, don’t assume they are before checking out.
DO NOT drive with your hazard lights on
There is a lot of confusion when it comes to driving with your hazard lights on in fog or rain. Some people do this to make themselves more visible, which is a good intention, but not wise and can cause an accident.
The hazard warning lights are designed to warn other motorists that you are stationary or to warn other motorists of a road hazard.
If a motorist behind you sees that your hazard lights are on, they may panic thinking you have stopped (remember that visibility will be poor) and they may brake suddenly. This could cause an accident, especially with the motorist behind him, and so on.
Never drive with your hazard lights on. They are intended to signal a stopped car
Turn on your heating
If it is raining, it will likely be cool, which means condensation can build up inside your car. This will affect your visibility even more. Heating will help keep your windows clear.
Turn off your radio or reduce the volume. Listen carefully to your surroundings outside the car. You may hear another vehicle that you cannot see, or you may hear something or someone warning you to stop. You will be driving at a reduced speed so that wind noise is not too much of a problem with the window down.
Keep your distance
Do not get too close to the car in front of you. If he has to stop suddenly, you could crash into him. Stay well behind.
Avoid changing lanes
Don’t change lanes unless you have to. Stay inside (right lane) and do not rush. Constantly changing lanes is potentially dangerous as it could lead to an accident. Remember that the motorists behind you may not have seen you.
Pick a path and stay there.