Tag Archives | Slippery road surface

Freeze control

Frozen roads are a different ball game to the rest of the year and your driving style needs to adapt for the conditions. Traction is the big difference as there’s less grip on icy and slippery roads. To drive safely, go easy on your controls and always accelerate and decelerate slowly and gently to avoid wheel spin, locking brakes and oversteer. Staying in a high gear can also help maximise your traction. As speed limits are not targets, make sure you drive at a pace safe for these wintery conditions, even if that means travelling slower than usual.

Autumn leaves

Fallen leaves may be colourful, but when combined with heavier autumn rainfall, they can catch out an unwary driver. Slippery leaves pose a significant traction problem. As they fall, they tend to accumulate near the gutter, then get soaked and stick together, effectively blocking drains and preventing water running away. So a combination of mushed up leaves and water quickly builds to create a possible skid area.

Watch out for leafy avenues where you may corner and be unaware that one or more wheels are sliding across the mulch at the same time. Darker autumn mornings and early evenings also make it harder to spot this sodden hazard. Best advice: treat leaves with caution and be ready to slow down, you need to be certain what it is you are driving on.

Stuck in the mud

When approaching a stretch of visibly muddy road or ground, try to maintain a slow but steady speed. Never speed through mud, as the slippery surface can make it easy to lose control. If you come across ruts in the mud, try to avoid them – it’s better to blaze your own path in a deep mud situation, as ruts caused by other drivers can reduce steering ability and can be impossible to pull out of. They also tend to hold the softest, wettest portion of mud and reduce the amount of clearance between the ground and bottom of your car, increasing the likelihood of getting stuck. You have been warned!

Slippery approach

What does a ‘Slippery road surface’ sign mean to you? Apart from the obvious, it can also mean that the road surface ahead may have a different level of grip to the one you are currently driving on, which means it isn’t slippery as such – just different. However, if you come across one of these signs put up as a temporary sign (like roadworks) it means something totally different. It suggests there has been a spillage on the road ahead, such as oil or mud, making conditions slippery. Remember, signs are always there for a reason.