Safety Tips For Driving In Bad Weather

SAFETY TIPS FOR DRIVING IN BAD WEATHERDriving in adverse weather conditions is never easy. It’s usually best to avoid it altogether, but in certain situations, such as an emergency, you may have to take to the road in bad weather.

You should always take care when driving, but this becomes even more important in poor conditions. We’ve written up a guide with some essential safety tips that can help you navigate the roads in bad weather. Check it out below.

Remember to Use Your Lights

One of the most dangerous factors to consider when driving in poor weather is the reduced visibility. To drive safely, you must have a clear and unobstructed view of your surroundings. This way, you can spot hazards in plenty of time and take action to avoid them.

This becomes much more difficult in bad weather. Whether it’s heavy rain, snow or thick mist, you will find it harder to see what’s in front of you and will have less time to react to hazards.

You need to make full use of your lights in bad weather. Turn on the fog lights, this will help you see the road more clearly and will allow other drivers to see you as well.

Slow Down

As well as reducing visibility, poor weather can also make road surfaces more dangerous. Rain, snow or ice can make the roads slick and slippery, increasing the risk of skidding and significantly increasing stopping distances.

If you are an experienced driver, you will have an innate understanding of how long your car takes to come to a stop. However, bad weather can completely change this, and you may find that your car takes much longer to stop after you apply the brakes.

This is why it’s so important to slow down when driving in poor weather. This will ensure you can brake in time to avoid hazards and will give you a better chance of spotting risks and taking action.

Use Snow Chains

Driving in snowy conditions can be extremely dangerous and is best avoided at all costs. However, if you have to drive in the snow, using snow chains on your tyres is essential.

Snow chains fit over the tyres of your car and can improve your grip on slippery road surfaces. Studs in the chains dig into the snow and help prevent your car from skidding and slipping.

Plan Ahead

If you need to drive in poor conditions, planning and preparation ahead of time is essential.

Study the route you’re going to take and identify any points that could pose a potentially large risk. Look for alternative routes that you could take should your initial route be too dangerous or closed.

You should also follow weather forecasts ahead of your trip. This can give you an idea of what conditions to expect when out on the road and can let you know whether they are expected to improve or get even worse.

Be Prepared

You run a higher risk of breaking down or becoming stranded when driving in poor conditions. This can be a dangerous situation, particularly in low temperatures.

You should always carry emergency supplies in your vehicle. These can help keep you safe should you break down or become stranded and will reduce the chance of you suffering any injuries as a result.

Pack things like reflective triangles, blankets, spare clothes, a torch, water, a spare phone, a first aid kit and tools for making any necessary repairs to your vehicle. Cat litter can also be handy; this can be poured onto the road surface to improve traction if you get stuck.

Inspect Your Vehicle

The final point in our guide for driving in bad weather is to inspect your vehicle thoroughly before your trip.

As we mentioned above, breaking down during poor conditions can be extremely dangerous, even life-threatening. Before you set off, inspect your vehicle in detail, paying particular attention to things like your brake system, to ensure there are no issues.

Doing so will ensure there are no unforeseen faults or malfunctions during your trip and will help you arrive at your destination safely.


We always advise trying to avoid driving in poor weather conditions. However, we understand that this isn’t always possible. Emergencies can and do occur, and these can often require you to drive in bad weather. If you have to, make sure you read our guide and follow our tips to keep yourself self. Be prepared, plan ahead, use your lights and snow tyres, drive slowly and always inspect your vehicle before you set off. 

You can read more tips for driving in bad weather, and how to prepare for a long trip in bad weather by following this link: https://www.jdpower.com/cars/shopping-guides/safety-tips-for-driving-in-bad-weather here.


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