With Storm Brendan set to hit parts of the UK later today and warnings of travel disruption, IAM RoadSmart has prepared some useful hints on how to stay safe if you are driving.
With high winds and heavy rain forecast for much of the country over today and tomorrow, take note of any weather warnings and traffic updates in your local area – this will help you make the right decision. And if weather conditions are deteriorating, think twice about starting your journey.
Driving in strong winds can be extremely hazardous - and can unsettle and destabilise your car, pushing it off course. Take firm hold of the steering wheel and be mindful of vulnerable road users such as motorcyclists, who will need more room than usual.
Look for gaps between buildings (where wind can travel through and blow your car off course) and be careful when overtaking larger vehicles – in both instances gusts of wind might be particularly strong. The movement of trees on the roadside can give a useful indication of wind strength. Be wary of debris on roads and allow yourself enough space to drive around it if necessary. Driving at a steady speed will also ensure you give yourself more time to slow down before a hazard.
Richard Gladman, IAM RoadSmart head of driving and riding standards, said: “Keep an eye on the vehicles ahead of you – looking for clues as to how the wind may be affecting them will give you advanced warning of where the wind may be strongest.
He added: “Stormy weather can be extremely unpredictable – be prepared for the worst. And as always, avoid the journey where possible.”
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IAM RoadSmart has a mission to make better drivers and riders in order to improve road safety, inspire confidence and make driving and riding enjoyable. It does this through a range of courses for all road users, from online assessments through to the advanced driving and riding tests. IAM RoadSmart is the trading name of all businesses operated by the UK’s largest road safety charity, the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) and was formed in April 2016 combining the IAM, IAM Drive & Survive, PDS and IAM Driver Retraining Academy. The organisation has 92,000 members and campaigns on road safety on their behalf. At any one time there are over 7,000 drivers and riders actively engaged with IAM RoadSmart’s courses, from members of the public to company drivers, while our Driver Retraining Academy has helped 2,500 drivers to shorten their bans through education and support programmes.
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To find out the name of your own local IAM RoadSmart group please visit: https://wwwiamroadsmart.com/local-groups