Content provided courtesy of USAA.
Spinning, slipping and sliding are great when you're on an amusement park ride, but they can be deadly when you're in a car.
Wet roads increase the risk of hydroplaning, which occurs when a thin layer of water separates tires from the roadway. Hydroplaning reduces your ability to stop or steer, a feeling similar to sliding on ice. According to the American Safety Council's SafeMotorist.com, the most dangerous conditions arise during the first 10 minutes of a light rain shower, when water mixes with oil on the road to create an especially slippery surface. To decrease your chances of hydroplaning, the council recommends that you:
- Keep your tires properly inflated and rotate them periodically.
- Slow down when roads are wet.
- Steer clear of puddles and standing water.
- Avoid driving in outer lanes where water tends to accumulate.
- Follow in the tracks left by cars ahead of you.
- Drive in a lower gear.
- Turn off the cruise control.
- Avoid hard stops and sharp turns.