With storms on the way, the Oceanside office of the California Highway Patrol has issued tips for how to remain safe driving on the county's roadways in slick conditions.
Make sure wiper blades are in good working order. If they are more than one year old, they may need to be replaced. Make sure wiper fluid is topped off.
Tires should be checked to ensure proper tread depth. It should be no less than 4/32 of an inch for proper traction on wet roads. Also make sure pressure is correct for each tire.
Vehicle lights should be checked to make sure they are in good working order. Headlights should be turned on whenever windshield wipers are in use, as required by law.
One of the most important things to do when driving on rainy roads is to slow down. People mistakenly blame wet weather for accidents, when many accidents are actually caused because the driver failed to adjust for weather conditions.
— San Diego PD (@SanDiegoPD) January 4, 2016
Accounting for slippery conditions, drivers should allow themselves extra distance following behind another vehicle, as vehicles move farther on wet surfaces before stopping after braking.
Never drive through standing water because it is impossible to tell how deep it is.
Watch out for hydroplaning. At higher speeds, water can build up between tires and the ground causing loss of traction and contact with the pavement.
If hydroplaning occurs, drivers should react by letting off the accelerator. But do no brake. Ease off the steering wheel. Once traction is regained, drivers can lose control of their vehicle if they've turned their steering wheels while hydroplaning. Slow down until traction is regained, then keep speed slow.
It is also important to remember to pay even closer attention to driving during inclement weather. Do not text and drive, which is illegal under any conditions, and stay off the phone unless it is an emergency. Of course, always wear seat belts.
Also, first responders will be out on the roadways assisting motorists, so look out for their safety.