Tips to Help You Become a More Defensive Driver in the Rain

Mundie's tow truck in the rain

No matter how demanding the job is, our towing company is always pleased to lend a helping hand – and truck – when someone is in need. However, working as a tow truck driver is no easy feat. There are many challenges that come with the role, and it can be tough to handle them all. Whether it be the many potential hazards that are involved when towing cars, being constantly on call, or the high-stress situations, the job can be quite demanding.

One of the most troublesome aspects of running a towing company in Vancouver is the torrential rain we face. With the spring season just around the corner, we’re about to get some fresh fall of rain which can lend to unsafe driving conditions in our city. In times like these, it pays to be a defensive driver. Not only does this help you focus on your surroundings, but it also lowers your chances of becoming distracted while behind the wheel. Since fatalities caused by distracted driving has surpassed those caused by impaired driving in Canada, road awareness is the most important tool in your arsenal. Here are 6 tips to be a defensive driver in the rain:

1.    Drive Cautiously

As a towing company, we understand the importance of cautious driving. Slowing down and keeping a close eye on your surroundings is one of the best things you can do when driving in the rain. How slick the road is will help determine the speed at which you should be driving. The more torrential the rain, the slower you should go. This also helps avoid the need to make sharp turns or slam on the brakes, keeping you and other drivers safe.

2.    Leave More Room Between Cars

While reducing your speed is important, keeping a safe distance between you and the cars ahead of you is crucial. Since it takes longer for your car to stop when driving on wet roads, it’s a good idea to leave more distance than usual. We’ve seen many collisions occur because of inadequate following distance, and we don’t want you to be one of them. ICBC recommends leaving two seconds worth of distance in good weather conditions, three seconds on high-speed roads, and four seconds in bad weather conditions, such as heavy rainfall.

3.    Don’t Rely on Cruise Control

In rainy weather, cruise control may not be the best idea. While it works great in dry conditions, cruise control has been known to perform ineffectively when driving in the rain. Driving the old-fashioned way – sans cruise control – increases your response time should you lose traction or need to come to a sudden stop.

4.    Prevent Hydroplaning

Hydroplaning occurs when a vehicle’s tires are unable to adequately grip the road, oftentimes due to a layer of water getting between the two. This can cause you to lose directional control of your vehicle and is very common in rainy conditions. However, being a defensive driver and keeping your speeds at manageable levels can help avoid hydroplaning. Additionally, you’ll want to ensure your tires are properly inflated to increase directional control.

5.    Use Your Headlights

When it’s raining, it’s highly recommended that you use your headlights. Not only does this improve your road visibility, but it also makes you more easily seen by other drivers. However, avoid using your high beams as this can have the opposite effect.

6.    Give Larger Vehicles Room

Larger vehicles, such as tow trucks, have a tough time navigating rainy roads, especially when they’re towing a load behind them. To be a defensive driver, you should pay close attention to any trucks and trailers sharing the road with you. Make sure you give them ample room – even more space than usual when driving in the rain. This extra reaction time will not only keep you safe, but the tow truck driver as well.

We’re the Trusted Towing Company in Vancouver and Surrounding Cities

While these tips can help keep you safe driving on slick, rain-covered roads, accidents still happen. Should you need assistance, our tow truck company is here to help. With a large, full-service fleet and years of expertise under our belts, we know we can help recover and transport your vehicle in a safe, timely manner. Contact our 24-hour dispatch today for service in Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Coquitlam, Delta, and Surrey!