Motorists warned to be cautious of rain showers after hot weather

With showers sweeping the country after the recent hot weather, drivers are being warned to be extra cautious on the roads.

Although driving in the rain can be hazardous, Swinton is warning that driving after the first downpour of showers following hot or dry weather is particularly bad as it can bring oil and lubricant to the surface of the road. This slick can interfere with a motorists ability to drive and can markedly increase the risk of skidding or spinning.

Swinton, the UK’s leading high street retailer of car insurance, advises that motorists take extra caution on the road directly after a substantial downpour, especially if it hasn’t rained in a considerable amount of time. Motorists should drive at a safe and steady speed. Travelling at high speeds or breaking suddenly will increase drivers’ risk of skidding.

Swinton is also advising motorists to make sure they have the safe and legal tread depth standard on their tyres, which is no less 1.6mm. Tyre pressure is equally as important as brakes and steering will be adversely affected by under-inflated or over-inflated tyres. Keeping the tyre pressure and tread depth standards will ensure optimum performance in wet weather conditions.

It is also important that motorists check the fluid levels in their vehicles as low brake fluid may result in brake failure. The stopping distance for a vehicle increases in the rain by four times more than a dry surface so brake failure is even more likely to result in a crash. Drivers should make sure they recognise the low fluid warning lights on their vehicle.

Steve Chelton, Insurer development manager at Swinton, said: “When motorists drive along the roads when it’s dry, they may leave residue and drip oil on the roads that will accumulate until it rains. The first downpour of rain often brings this oil and residue to the surface and can seriously reduce tyre traction.”

“Drivers should ensure they have the correct tyre tread and travel at a safe and steady speed. Skids and spins are a common cause of car accidents and damage, which could result in higher car insurance premiums.”