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It is Raining! Tips to Avoid an Accident

A car stops abruptly in front of you; an animal runs across the road, a child darts out into traffic. All of these unfortunate situations and more can happen in the blink of an eye!

For every mile per hour you travel you are increasing your stopping distance and reducing your ability to avoid a collision. Speed limits are set to maximize the potential for safe driving based on road type, size and conditions. Exceeding the speed Limit isn’t only a violation of the law; it is a life safety issue. In wet conditions, like today and every day, please monitor your speed to make sure that you are not exceeding legal limits or travelling faster than is safe for conditions.

Slow down and keep the distance between you and the vehicle In front far enough to not only allow for a slow, smooth, stopping or slowing motion, but still have enough room for those emergency fast stops. A little extra room and a little less speed go a long way.

Danger isn’t only present when exceeding the speed limit, it can occur when you first start up - from a stop. Be sure to look both ways and confirm that vehicle are stopped or stopping when proceeding from a 4-way intersection (whether it’s controlled by signs or lights). Especially in stoplight controlled intersections, we all know how those in a hurry will attempt to beat the red light and sometimes they are not very successful, entering the intersection after the light has turned red (and probably at a speed exceeding the posted limit). Once the light turns green, don’t expect everyone to stop...ensure they stop!

A persons driving “skills” (or lack of) are not the only factor in accidents; the condition of the vehicle can play an important role in vehicle safety and crash avoidance. Poorly inflated or low tread on tires can reduce the tire’s ability to grab onto the road surface, especially during periods where the road is slick. This reduces the operator's ability to control the vehicle and puts everyone at risk. Have your tires routinely checked by a professional to make sure that you have the right amount of tread to keep you safe.

Likewise, and as obvious as it may be to some, faulty brakes can be a serious issue. Each year there are accidents involving vehicles with brakes in poor condition. In many cases, the driver hoped to “just get a few more miles out of the brakes.” They planned to drive safely and avoid any sudden stops, but as they later found out, you can only control your actions, not the actions of others, and one quick stop leads to complete brake failure. Don’t take chances, when the brakes are showing signs of wear or are ready for a routine inspection, take the time to make sure they pass a brake check-up.

The Newark Police Department asks that you use caution while driving, be aware of posted laws and regulations, and to make sure your vehicle is in good working order, in order to create safe travels for you and your family.

Posted by: Liz Warren Published:4/24/12
Audience: Community