Nevada Insurance Council Advises Caution When Driving in Rain

In Las Vegas, rain can cause hundreds of accidents within a few hours as drivers unfamiliar with wet road conditions collide on our busy roads. To help drivers cope with the expected rain over the next few days, the Nevada Insurance Council compiled a list of safe driving tips for wet conditions.

“Many people are unaware of just how dangerous wet roads can be,” said Michael Geeser, president of the Nevada Insurance Council (NIC). “Especially in southern Nevada, where weather rarely affects driving conditions, many drivers are unfamiliar with the steps they should take when driving on wet roads.”

The NIC advises drivers to:

1. Slow down. Safely stopping and steering takes longer on wet roads.
2. Avoid slamming on your breaks. To maintain road traction, slow down by first easing off the gas pedal.
3. Leave plenty of room between you and the vehicle in front of you. Give yourself time to react to upcoming traffic signals or turns. Increase the “three second rule” when driving on wet roads.
4. Avoid sharp turns. Ease off the gas, break slowly, turn, and then accelerate.
5. Wet roads can cause hydroplaning, which happens when the car is driving on a film of water instead of on the roadbed. If your car begins to skid, continue steering in the direction you want to go and ease off the gas. Do not slam on your breaks.
6. Turn on your headlights. They not only help you see better, they help other drivers see you.
7. When possible, use the middle lanes and drive in the tracks of vehicles in front of you. Do not follow buses or large trucks so closely that the spray from their tires affects your visibility.
8. Do not use cruise control. Using cruise control requires breaking to slow down and reduces the driver’s options.

The NIC also noted that cars should be properly maintained for driving in the rain. Tires need adequate tread to channel water on wet roads; windshield wipers need to be replaced annually and checked to make sure that they work properly; headlights, turn signals, and taillights need to be working; and defrosters should be operational.