|SPRING DRIVING TIPS|
Spring in Minnesota means melting snow and icy roads, in addition to hazards such as rain, mist and fog. When these conditions exist, drivers must use extra caution on the roadways. The Minnesota Safety Council offers the following safety tips:
Slow down and increase your following distance when rain or mist begins to fall. Even a small amount of water can mix with oil and grease on the road to create slippery conditions.
Use your low beam headlights. High beams reflect water vapor (fog) and make it harder to see. Low beams are the law in any event if your visibility is limited to 500 feet or there is precipitation.
If you are driving in rain or fog that totally impairs visibility, pull off the road as far as possible and turn on your hazard lights.
To keep the inside of your windshield clear of moisture, turn on your fan and defroster the air conditioner may work wonders as well.
Allow extra following distance a car needs two to ten times more distance to stop on a wet road than on dry pavement.
Avoid driving through large puddles the splashing water may affect your brakes, cause your car to swerve, and impair the vision of other motorists.
Watch the road to see if the vehicle ahead is leaving tire tracks, and if it is, follow in those tracks if you can. If it's not, reduce speed slowly to prevent hydroplaning.
Watch for icy conditions caused by thawing snow, spring rains or mist, especially in shaded areas, on bridges and on overpasses. Remember that these areas freeze first.
Keep an eye out for pedestrians, who may be less alert to traffic in the rain and fog, and more difficult for you to see.
For more information about safe driving contact the Minnesota Safety Council at (651) 291-9150 or (800) 444-9150.