(Contributed by : Ajay Wali )
TIPS FOR SAFE DRIVING IN MONSOON SEASONS.
J&K is a state of extreme weather conditions from Peer Panjal to Chenab valley to Kashmir all having inadequate road infrastructure and some brutal driving conditions in the rainy season, I hope the following tips and guidelines will help you towards safer motoring in the rains.
1.First things is stay off the road during heavy rains. If you are driving on a highway or some hilly areas and visibility gets worse park some place safe till the rain subsides and plan your journey such that you reach your destination within daylight hours.
2.In driving in landslide prone areas always shut the music and keep you window panes on half so that you can hear about any impending noise of rocks falling and take precautions accordingly.
3. Carry a couple of cigarettes or a pouch of tobacco in your glove-box, if visibility becomes a problem due to heavy rainfall rubbing tobacco on windshield works wonders. It is a time tested trick, you can trust it.
4. Keep a first aid box , torch and an umbrella handy, even a small hammer in the event of flood waters jamming your doors, the hammer would come handy in breaking the windows for escape.
5. When it rains trucks and other commercial vehicles have absolutely no rear view, take extreme caution before overtaking them. In all probability honk and flash your headlights liberally, before deciding to over take a heavy duty vehicle.
6. When driving through a flooded area, choose the first gear, slip the clutch and keep the revs high , the lower your cars speed the better.
7. Don’t drive on the a absolute edge of the road,this area usually offers poor traction in wet also you need to leave some margin for error, worse still this area may just give away in rains.
8. Avoid hard braking when driving in the wet as it can only cause you to slide forward and you won’t be able to control the car.
9. Keep a greater distance between your vehicle and the one in front of you, stopping the vehicle would be more difficult when driving in rain.
10. Lastly your tyres must have enough tread depth , driving bald tyres is like committing sucide in rain , change the wipers too each year just before every monsoons , they just cost around 400 -500 for a pair.
The rains are simply beautiful but taking precautions can make it worthwhile driving in rain.
(The writer can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com )