Safe Driving In Windy Weather

By Ronak Shah

Safe Driving In Windy Weather

If you live in Melbourne, you will know that, while we have four seasons in a year, at times in one Melbourne day you could experience all four seasons!

During the coming months, CDTA we will be giving you some valuable information on how to be just that little bit more safe on the roads during the different weather extremities.

This article will give you some great points on how to change your drive style to suit the extreme windy weather we are experiencing during the past few days.

During such extreme conditions where the strength of the wind is actually blowing you side to side, it might be wise to ask yourself, if the trip you are embarking on is really necessary. We highly advise during such conditions to only travel where there is no other option. If you do have to travel, listen out for local news bulletinsto keep up to date with road closures.

If the weather conditions get too hard to cope with and you get an opportunity to pull over, do so and, if it is safe and legal, phone a family member or friend and let them know you have stopped on the side of the road.

CDTA highly recommend you follow the tips provided below to allow for Safe Driving in Windy Weather:

  • Always Plan your Journey

Check the road maps and see if there is a route with less exposure to the weather, If it’s an option choose a sheltered route.

  • Drive Slowly enough to cope with gusts

High winds can get under a car and affect its handling and braking quite significantly.

  • Be alert and prepared when driving in exposed areas

Be sure to have both hands on your steering wheel as well as keeping a general awareness throughout these areas. Vehicles could be hit by sudden gusts of wind. Strong winds are not constant; they’re usually gusty and can catch you off guard

  • Be extremely careful when overtaking high-sided vehicles

Overtaking such vehicles can result in a sudden gust from the side as you clear.

  • Give cyclists, motorcyclists, trucks and buses more room than usual

They will get blown around far more easily by side winds. Motorcyclists especially should avoid any road trips during high winds as high winds can affect the handling of the motorcycle. Consider increasing the two-second rule to three seconds

  • Keep a keen eye out for the car in front of you

This is the best pre-warning, if they appear to be blown off course brace yourself and keep a steady hand on the wheel. We recommend keeping to or reducing your speed by 5km during heavy winds.

  • Make sure that you park your car in a safe place

Avoid parking your car under trees and near buildings. During high winds the chances of debris hitting your car are highly increased.

The essential responses when a car is hit by a gust is to back off the accelerator, brake carefully if you need to and hold the steering wheel firmly to regain the control of your car. During high winds, keep your speed to a moderate level, keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front of you and be sure to look ahead at trees, hedges, and overhead power lines/cables to get an indication of the winds direction and strength. Or best of all, stay home!

We hope that the above information gives you a good source of general knowledge into driving safely during windy weather.

Corporate Driver Training Australia has a fantastic new training approach that’s light-years ahead of defensive driving. It’s called Low-Risk Driving. The good news is that Low-Risk Driving works. Low Risk Driving delivers safer drivers and fewer crashes. Your colleagues will be impressed with your decision to choose a Low Risk Driving Course over the old technology. Should you require any information on different driving styles to suit weather conditions for your company, be sure to get in contact with us, we would love to hear from you to further discuss this matter!

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