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Driving In Wet Conditions

As the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers”, but wet pavement contributes to nearly 1.2 million traffic crashes annually.

Often times, drivers don’t adapt to the wet roads.  Driving is driving.  The tires have treads and will adhere to the roads in all conditions.  However, it’s not that simple.  Driving in wet conditions brings challenges and with it an increase in the likelihood of an accident.

With this in mind, it’s your responsibility to adapt to the changing environment when getting behind the wheel in hazardous weather conditions.

You can do this in a variety of ways, which include:

Avoid Cruise Control

For most of us, when driving on the highway, we turn on the cruise control and off we go.  Cruise control works great in dry conditions, but when in wet conditions, the chance of losing control of your vehicle drastically increases.  Cruise control is not intended to be used in this type of weather.  You run the risk of hydroplaning or sliding out of control.

Slow Down and Give Space

According to AAA, with as little as 1/12 inch of water on the road, tires have to displace a gallon of water be second in order to keep the rubber meeting the road.  Drivers should reduce speeds to correspond to the amount of water on the road.  Even speeds as low as 35mph, brand new tires can lose contact with the road.

Avoid hard braking or turning sharply and drive in the tracks of the vehicle in front of you.  Leave ample distance between you and the car in the front in order to have enough space for braking.  The rule of thumb is 1 car length for every 10mph during dry conditions.


The most important thing to do is not to panic.  Even the most careful of drivers can experience skids.  First, continue to look and to steer in the direction that you want the car to go.   Second, avoid slamming on the brakes as this will further upset the balance and make it more difficult to control.

Car Equipment Works

Making sure your headlights, taillights, and windshield wipers are in working order is crucial.  Tires need to have sufficient tread.  If you can see the wear bars or the tread is completely worn down, it’s time to get them replaced.

Use Your Windshield Wipers

It might seem like common sense to use your windshield wipers, but it’s not uncommon to for drivers to forget to turn them on in light rain.  Windshield wipers should clear rain from the glass in one swipe without any smearing.  If they do not, then it’s time to replace them.

Turn on Your Headlights

If you have to use your windshield wipers, your headlights need to be on as well.  Headlights will significantly increase your visibility and make it much easier for other vehicles (including 18 wheeler trucks) to see you.

If you or someone you know was involved in an accident in the Kansas City area, we recommend that you consult with an experienced personal injury attorney.  Here at McShane & Brady, LLC, our personal injury attorneys fully understand the intricacies of Missouri’s car accident laws. We can provide personalized guidance based on the specific details of your case, ensuring that your rights are protected and you receive fair compensation.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Missouri, seeking legal representation is highly recommended. The personal injury law firm of McShane & Brady, LLC, is dedicated to helping car accident victims navigate the legal complexities, protecting your rights, and securing the compensation you deserve. If you’re still unsure and find yourself wondering ‘Do I need a lawyer for a car accident in Missouri’, we are happy to speak with you and answer your questions. Contact us today at (816) 888-8010 or visit our website to schedule a free consultation. Let us guide you through the process and ensure your rights are protected every step of the way.