(KGTV) - The first rainfall in eight months may quadruple the rate of freeway car crashes in San Diego during Tuesday's commute, according to the California Highway Patrol.
“When you can actually see that full roadway wet, that’s when it’s going to draw up all that oil and dirt. Those first few hours are going to be the most dangerous,” said CHP public information officer Jake Sanchez.
Speed is key. The CHP recommends that all drivers slow down. Plan for your commute to take twice as long, Sanchez said.
Mechanical issues are also important for safety. Your lights should be on when your wipers are on, per California law. Also, check your tire tread to make sure your tires aren't slick.
“NASCAR drivers race on slick tires. You never see a NASCAR race in the rain. These are the best drivers in the world. They won’t go out there on a wet racetrack because they will crash,” Sanchez said.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’RE IN A CRASH
In the event you're in a car accident (rain-related or otherwise), the California Highway Patrol recommends taking these steps:
- Attend to the medical needs of anyone involved. Call 911 if necessary-but remember that 911 is for emergencies only.
- When there are no injuries, move your vehicle out of traffic to the nearest place of safety.
- Notify the CHP or the police.
- Exchange driver license, vehicle registration, and insurance information with the other driver or drivers.
- Do not accept or place any blame. Your insurance company has people trained to determine who is at fault.
- Gather contact information from possible witnesses.
- Take a moment to write down details of the collision, such as time of day, traffic conditions, weather conditions, and the events that led up to the collision.
GETTING READY FOR RAIN: