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AAA says Severe Storms pose Serious Crash Risk

 

AAAKnoxville, TN – Spring storms can create dangerous driving conditions.  AAA – The Auto Club Group is advising motorists to exercise extreme caution while driving during weather events and, if possible, to delay travel until the storm passes. 

Trucks, vans, SUVs and trailers are more vulnerable to high wind gusts and could potentially be pushed around or flipped by high winds. If winds are severe, safely pull over onto the shoulder of the road and stop.

AAA Tips to Weather the Storm.

AAA Tips to Weather the Storm.

AAA is urging drivers to stay up-to-date on local weather forecasts and road conditions.

“April showers may bring May flowers, but they can also bring damaging wind, hail and unsafe driving conditions,” said Stephanie Milani, Tennessee Public Affairs Director, AAA – The Auto Club Group.  “Drivers can take steps to protect themselves before they travel, and while on the road, to ensure a safe commute.”

AAA Tips For Drivers During Strong Storms and Heavy Winds

  • Anticipate gusts- Pay attention when driving through areas prone to strong winds or when weather reports forecast severe weather.
  • Reduce speed
  • Firmly grip the steering wheel. Know your vehicle, light cars, vans and other “boxy” vehicles are more likely to be blown by strong gusts of wind.
  • Increase space between your vehicle and other motorists, especially vans, recreational vehicles and cars pulling trailers which may be adversely affected by the wind.
  • Drive in these conditions only when absolutely necessary.

Tips for Driving on Wet Roads

  • Slow Down and Leave Room: Slowing down during wet weather driving can be critical to reducing a car’s chance of hydroplaning, when the tires rise up on a film of water. With as little as ½ inch of water on the road, tires have to displace a gallon of water per second to keep the rubber meeting the road. Drivers should reduce their speed to correspond to the amount of water on the roadway. At speeds as low as 35 mph, new tires can still lose some contact with the roadway. Also, it is important for motorists to allow ample stopping distance between cars by increasing the following distance of the vehicle in front of them and beginning to slow down to stop for intersections, turns and other traffic early.
  • Avoid Cruise Control: This feature works great in dry conditions, but when used in wet conditions, the chance of losing control of the vehicle can increase. To prevent loss of traction, the driver may need to reduce the car’s speed by lifting off the accelerator, which cannot be accomplished when cruise control is engaged.
  • Rainy Conditions Can Cause Low Visibility: Turn on your headlights to help you see better and to allow other motorists to spot you better. Avoid using your highbeams because you could blind other drivers and the extra light will reflect off the rain, causing more of a distraction for you.
  • Visibility While Driving: If you can’t see the edges of the road or other vehicles at a safe distance while driving during wet weather, pull of the road as far as you can and wait for the rain to ease up. Make sure to turn on emergency flashers to alert other drivers.
  • Avoid Standing Water and Flooded Roads at All Times: There is no way to tell how deep standing water is on a flooded road and driving through it can cause a vehicle to stall and result in severe damage to the vehicle from:
    • Flooding the engine
    • Warping brake rotors
    • Loss of power steering
    • Short in electrical components
  • If Your Vehicle Stalls in a Flooded Area: DO NOT remain in the car. Abandon it as soon as possible and seek higher ground. Flood waters can elevate quickly, sweeping away the vehicle and its occupants.

Staying ahead of the weather is a crucial part of ensuring the safety of our members. AAA Members can get up-to-date weather information via AAA’s WeatherFX Alert system, powered by the Weather Company, complimentary with membership. You can learn more about the alert system here.

About The Auto Club Group

The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America.  ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9 million members across eleven states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. 

ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 57 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android.

Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.


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