Spring May Bring Adverse Driving Conditions

From rainy weather the spring months bring, to traveling through blowing dust and smoke from dry conditions or burning season, spring brings a different set of “adverse conditions” to drivers utilizing Kansas roads. 

A key factor in helping keep yourself and other drivers safe when traveling in any of these conditions, is to ensure you have turned the headlights on your vehicle on. Not only do your car’s headlights help you see better, but it also helps you to be more visible to other motorists. Kansas law does require headlights when traveling in adverse conditions:

Headlights must be used when

  • Insufficient light or unfavorable atmospheric conditions, including smoke, fog, and if persons and vehicles on the highway are not clearly discernible at a distance of 1,000 feet ahead; or

  • Windshield wipers are in continuous use as a result of rain, sleet, or snow.

Driving Tips

The Kansas Highway Patrol urges drivers to follow these driving tips during rainy weather:
  • Slow down and keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front of you. A vehicle needs two to three times more stopping distance on wet pavement. The combination of oil and water on roadways makes for slick travel.

  • Never drive through standing water if you don’t know the water’s depth. Hitting several inches of water at high speeds may cause you to lose control.
  • Change your windshield wiper blades when necessary to ensure proper operation.
  • If your vehicle is equipped with an anti-lock braking system, it is imperative that you understand how to use it. Read the vehicle owner’s manual or check with your dealership for more information.
  • Steer toward the direction you want to go if your vehicle loses traction and begins to slide. Anticipate a second skid in the opposite direction as the vehicle straightens out.
  • Cruise control should be turned off on roadways during wet and snowy conditions.
  • Always wear seat belts and put children in properly fitted child safety seats.