Although the UAE has a very warm climate and is sunny most of the year, sudden rain change may occur that can make driving more challenging and very dangerous.
To help you with driving safely in strong or heavy wind and rain, here are some points you should consider:
Use your headlights
Heavy rains can make the roads slippery and can also cause loss of visibility as spray from other vehicles cover windscreens and windows.
In the UAE, the Government of Dubai and the Road & Transport Authority (RTA) require drivers to turn on vehicle lights, even during the day, when visibility is poor. Using headlights will not just help increase your own visibility, but it will also help other vehicles to see you on the road.
It is also important to avoid puddles as puddles may sometimes hide large potholes and drown your engine that can result to a flat tire and less effective brakes.
Car tires tend to lose traction with the road when raining that may result in uncontrollable sliding or skidding. Labeled as hydroplaning, this phenomenon can be avoided through slowing down and engaging in low gear.
In the handbook called “A Guide to Safety Driving”, RTA suggests driving slowly and maintaining smooth acceleration during the rain to prevent flood water from entering vehicle’s exhaust pipe. The RTA also reminds drivers to not continue driving if the flood water is above 50% of the vehicle’s tire height.
Keep your distance
Keep in mind that it is more difficult to stop your vehicle when driving in the rain. To refrain from colliding with other vehicles, add an extra 1-2 seconds distance between your car and the vehicle in front of you. Maintaining a great distance will give you and the vehicles behind you more time to react to traffic.