Road Hazards

The road can be a dangerous place, filled with all sorts of different road hazards that a driver has to deal with and deal with safely. In this article we are going to highlight a few of the most common road hazards that drivers deal with most often. 

 

Driving In Poor Weather Conditions

If you find yourself driving and the weather conditions are not favorable for safe driving, you must adjust your driving techniques in order to maintain control of your vehicle and remain safe. If weather conditions are too treacherous, finding a safe place to pull over and wait out the weather is the safest option.

Wintery weather is one of the most dangerous weather conditions for a vehicle to be driving in. Snow and ice can accumulate on the road quickly and heavy snow can make visibility extremely low at times. In wintry conditions, a vehicle can easily skid off of the road, or slide into another vehicle. If you find yourself driving in these types of conditions, slow your speed down, keep both hands on the steering and maintain focus on the road at all times. If you should begin to skid out or slide on the road, let off of the gas (do not apply the brakes) and slow the vehicle down naturally, while keeping the vehicle as straight as possible on the road. 

If you find yourself driving in rainy conditions, you run the risk of hydroplaning. Hydroplaning is when your vehicle’s tires lose contact with the road and begin to ‘hover’ on top of a thin layer of water on the roadway. This is a very dangerous situation, as the vehicle becomes almost impossible to control. If you are driving in the rain, drive slower than you normally would. If you feel that you are hydroplaning or beginning to hydroplane, let off of the gas pedal and allow the vehicle to slow down. Do not hit the brakes. While the vehicle is slowing down, keep the vehicle straight in the direction that it wants to go. As you slow, the tires will regain control of the road and you will regain full control of the vehicle. 

 

Aggressive Drivers

Sharing the road with aggressive drivers is never a good feeling. Encountering an aggressive driver can be a scary and frustrating event. Aggressive drivers oftentimes have full disregard for traffic laws and are driving stressed and angry. This is a bad combination. If you encounter an aggressive driver or one that is experiencing road rage, it’s best to distance yourself from them. If you are able to pull over to safety or exit the roadway onto another road, that is typically best practice. Engaging with a stressed out aggressive driver can do more harm than good. The situation can escalate and dangerous confrontations can happen. 

 

Driving Safely At Night

Night time driving can be very tricky. Visibility is limited, oncoming vehicle’s have their headlights shining in your direction, it can make it very hard to focus on the road and see the roadway well. If you are having a hard time seeing the road at night, it’s best to slow your speed, even if you are driving under the posted speed limit. 

Another potential issue that driving at night poses is animal and pedestrian crossings. At night when visibility is lower, reaction time slows. This means that if an animal runs out across the road, or a person, you may not see them until it’s too late (if you are driving fast). If you are driving cautiously and slower than normal, you will be able to react to any surprise situation much quicker. 

These are just a few of the common road hazards that drivers may encounter while operating a motor vehicle, but they are important driving situations. By having the right information on how to approach driving in these situations, you will become a better, safer driver.