When Visibility Turns Bad: Tips On Driving In Fog
So the winter is back and the serious dense FOG as well. It’s always recommended to avoid driving in fog and stay away from the road in low visibility unless it is very urgent. From now on every other day you will watch a news item about fog, the delays on airports as well as certain road closures specially the Motorways.
Fog is the formation of a static layer of cooler air close to the ground as the night time temperature drops. Fog has caused a loss of numerous precious lives across the country, especially in the province of Punjab and KPK.
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There are few tips which everyone should follow to remain safe. Remember these are just tips and should not be taken as a guarantee. As I mentioned driving in fog and an unnecessary movement on the roads should be avoided at all cost. Bikers should be extra careful while riding in fog.
I have collected these tips from various online resources. I hope everyone will read it and act upon to remain safe and keep everyone else on the road safe as well.
- Slow down gradually and drive at a speed that suits the conditions. Make sure the full lighting system of your vehicle is turned on.
- Use your low beam headlights. High beams reflect off the moisture droplets in the fog, making it harder to see. HID and full beams are a BIG NO
- If you have fog lights on your vehicle, use them, in addition to your low beams. Again only approved color and temperature. Yellow are best. Legally allowed fog light should be installed if the vehicle is not currently with one. Some aftermarket fog lights don’t project light on the road and create a hazard by creating glare for other drivers.
- Use pavement markings to help guide you. Use the edge of the road as a guide, rather than the center line in fog. KEEP very slow.
- If you are driving on a road with other motorists, increase your following distance. Don’t tailgate while driving especially in fog.
- Stop any distraction in the vehicle. Even passengers can contribute to distraction Advise passenger to stay quiet while you are maneuvering via fog. Keep looking as far ahead as possible.
- Keep your windows and mirrors clean. Use your defroster and wipers to maximize your vision. Sometimes it is difficult to determine if poor visibility is due to fog or moisture on the windshield.
- If fog is very dense, just stop the vehicle in the protected area (service area or any fuel station) away from traffic and turn on your emergency flashers.
- Watch out for slow-moving and parked vehicles. Avoid overtaking and lane changes.
- Don’t stop on the traveled portion of the road. You could become the first link in a chain-reaction collision.
- Don’t speed up suddenly, even if the fog seems to be clearing. You could find yourself suddenly back in fog.
- Don’t speed up to pass a vehicle moving slowly or to get away from a vehicle that is following too closely.
- Watch your speed. You may be going faster than you think. If so, reduce speed gradually.
- Leave a safe braking distance between you and the vehicle ahead.
- Remain calm and patient. Don’t pass other vehicles or speed up suddenly.
- Don’t stop on the road. If the visibility is decreasing rapidly, pull off the road into a safe parking area and wait for the fog to lift.
- When visibility is reduced, use your low beam lights even if it’s not night time.
Drive Safe!- Stay Alert!