WITH further heavy rain forecast over the next few days, police are urging motorists to take extra care and exercise caution when out on the roads this weekend.
The Environment Agency has issued a number of flood warnings and is reminding drivers to be aware of surface water, potential flooding and disruption to travel. With the rain falling on already saturated ground in some areas, there is a risk of flooding from rivers and surface water flooding where rain overwhelms drainage systems. If driving through larger puddles or smaller areas of standing water, drive slowly and steadily, allow oncoming traffic to pass and always test your brakes after leaving the water.
If water has flooded across a section of road it may be difficult to tell exactly how deep it is. If you do come across a road that is flooded DO NOT attempt to drive through the flood water. This not only has the potential to put yourself and other people in serious danger, it could also damage your vehicle and wreck your engine.
Visibility can be seriously reduced in heavy rain so headlights must be used, together with allowing a bigger gap between you and the car in front to allow for the increased stopping distance. If you are unlucky enough to breakdown in heavy rain, advice from the AA is to try and get the car to a safe and visible place, call for roadside assistance and wait for help to arrive.
Anna Higgins from the Safer Roads Partnership said “We are urging all motorists to exercise caution in adverse weather conditions, use common sense and follow our simple advice. Localised flooding still exists in many places across the region and the current forecast is predicting more of the same. The bad weather we have already had has shown just how quickly roads can become flooded and very dangerous.
“Stay alert to local weather and news reports and visit the Environment Agency website (www.environment-agency.gov.uk ) for the latest flood information. If your local area is experiencing flooding it’s advisable to leave any non essential travel until it has subsided.”