Spring thunderstorms can get intense in and around The Natural State, and you’re likely no stranger to severe weather if you’re from the area. What happens if you’re caught on the road during a severe weather warning though? It can be pretty scary to drive in rough weather, but we’re here to help! Check out our severe weather driving tips below.
Driving in Thunderstorms
If you’re caught behind the wheel during a strong thunderstorm, remain as calm and clear-headed as possible. If heavy rain is reducing your visibility to the point of not being able to see what’s around you, pull off of the road and park until it passes. If you’re on the interstate and cannot park somewhere, pull over on the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights to alert other drivers.
While driving through a thunderstorm, you should:
Turn your headlights on
Keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you
Have a safe way to receive warnings
Watch for flying debris
Keep your windows up
Do NOT attempt to drive on a flooded street, even if you think you can make it through without trouble. Most flood fatalities happen because people attempt to drive through flood waters rather than taking an alternate route. Even if you make it through the water unharmed, you can cause permanent damage to your vehicle. Safety comes first — find another way to your destination or call for help.
Driving During Tornado Warnings
If you’re caught on the road during a tornado warning, it can certainly be anxiety-inducing. There’s a lot of false information out there on the subject, so we want to make sure you have the facts. If you’re driving when a tornado warning is issued or you see a tornado nearby, you should:
Seek shelter nearby if possible, or pull your car onto the side of the road if there’s no other option. Do not try to outrun the tornado! Enter a building or storm shelter if you can, or find the lowest area on the ground and lie down, shielding your head with your hands.
Avoid tunnels and bridges. These can actually channel a tornado’s high winds and put you in even more danger. Do not take shelter under an overpass!
Stay alert and use your best judgment when it comes to driving in severe weather. Many factors go into making the best decision in any situation, but always put the safety of yourself and those around you first. If something seems dangerous or risky, don’t do it!
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