Driving in adverse West Virginia weather conditions can be daunting, especially when the roads are wet due to rain or snow. While both road conditions present challenges for drivers, they require different approaches to ensure safe driving.
Driving in rain
Rainy conditions can make the roads slippery, reducing traction and increasing the risk of hydroplaning. Hydroplaning occurs when the tires lose contact with the road surface and the vehicle skids uncontrollably.
To avoid hydroplaning, drivers should reduce their speed, avoid sudden movements and drive in the tracks of the vehicle in front of them. Furthermore, ensuring the tires have sufficient tread depth and are inflated to the correct pressure will reduce the chance of motor vehicle accidents. Drivers should also check that their windshield wipers are functioning correctly to ensure visibility.
Driving in snow
Snowy conditions, on the other hand, can make the roads slippery and reduce visibility, making it challenging to navigate. When driving in the snow, drivers should reduce their speed and avoid sudden movements, which can cause the vehicle to slide.
Maintaining a safe following distance is crucial to avoiding collisions, as the vehicle’s stopping distance is longer on snow-covered roads. Drivers should also ensure that the vehicle’s brakes, headlights and windshield wipers are functioning properly. Using winter tires can improve traction and reduce the risk of skidding.
Difference in temperature
Rain often occurs at a temperature above freezing, while snow occurs at a temperature below water’s freezing point. This means that the road conditions in snowy weather are often more treacherous, as snow can freeze and become packed, making it more challenging to drive on. When driving in these weather conditions, drivers should take extra caution and avoid sudden movements.
Staying safe in rain and snow
Driving in rain and snow requires different approaches to ensure safe driving. While reducing speed and avoiding sudden movements are essential in both situations, drivers must be aware of the specific challenges of each type of weather. By adjusting their speed, checking their vehicle is adequately equipped with appropriate tires and following defensive driving techniques, drivers can navigate wet and snowy roads with confidence, ensuring the safety of themselves and other road users.