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Emergency Alerts
Nine Tips for Driving in Fog
2017-10-19 15:31:00 gdemo.gov.cn

Fog, rain and snow are very common in winter. Fog, the most common weather in winter, brings potential risks to driving and using a vehicle. So, mastering safe driving principles is one of the most crucial skills for driving in foggy weather.

 

Principle one: use lights correctly

 

When driving in foggy conditions, with the exception of high beams, turn all types of lights on, alerting following vehicles to your position. If driving on an expressway or the fog is quite heavy, turn hazard lights on.

 

Avoid using high beams in foggy weather. High-beam headlights project lights upward and are reflected back by thick fog. Thus, drivers will see nothing more than a vast expanse of whiteness.

 

Principle two: drive at a relatively low speed

 

When driving in foggy conditions, you should observe the traffic rules and refrain from breaking the speed limit. The heavier the fog is, the poorer the visibility will be, and the lower the speed at which you must drive. When visibility ranges between 100m and 200m, your driving speed should be kept below 60 km/h; when visibility is between 50m and 100m, you should drive at a speed of less than 40 km/h; when visibility is less than 30m, you should drive at a speed of less than 20 km/h; if visibility is less than 10m, it is suggested that you pull over to the roadside and verify the safety of your position.

 

Principle three: sound the horn to alert others

Ordinarily, it is not only disturbing but also impolite to sound the horn often. But in foggy conditions, it is necessary to honk the horn, helping to remind pedestrians that a vehicle is coming and they should watch out.

 

Principle four: refrain from passing blindly/be watchful for pedestrians

 

If you find a vehicle pulling over on the right side of the road, avoid passing under conditions of limited visibility, as the vehicle may be waiting for oncoming vehicles to pass first. Before you overtake a stopped vehicle, make sure that it doesn’t intend to start and that no vehicle is coming from the opposite direction. You should quickly and vigorously sound the horn and bypass the vehicle from the left side at a low speed.

 

In addition, avoid driving on or across the central line, otherwise you may end in crashing into oncoming vehicles. Before entering a curve or proceeding downhill, you should slow down to avoid changing speed, pulling up or stalling halfway.

 

In fog conditions with poor visibility, you should pay extra attention to pedestrians on the road, especially when you are driving in a suburb without street lights.

 

Principle five: don’t slam on the brakes

 

Considering that in foggy weather drivers have difficulty in judging the distance between vehicles, if you apply the brakes suddenly, following vehicles may collide with you. The best method to avoid braking hard is to drive at a low speed and maintain a long distance from preceding vehicles.

 

If you do need to brake, try to brake gently several times consecutively. In this way, not only can speed be controlled, but also following vehicles will receive warnings effectively.

 

Principle six: drive on the outside of a two-lane road and drive on the middle lane of a three-lane road

 

Since visibility is poor in foggy conditions, when driving on a one-way three-lane road, it is advisable to pick the middle lane rather than rightmost or leftmost lane. Thereby, you can avoid dealing with accidents and other situations occurring on the rightmost and leftmost lanes. So driving on the middle lane is highly recommended.

 

Regarding one-way or two-lane roads, drive slowly on the outside. Driving slowly is the most important safety precaution when visibility is poor.

 

Principle seven: in case of emergency, you should switch on hazard lights and use a warning sign

 

When traffic accidents occur in foggy weather, instead of first calling the police, the most important precaution is to put up a warning sign behind your vehicle. To ensure that following vehicles can circumvent the site earlier in poor visibility conditions, you need to place the warning sign at a farther distance (more than 100m). After placing the warning sign, you should turn on all types of lights, especially hazard lights, to warn following vehicles. Then, passengers should go to a safe shelter immediately and call the police. Don’t stay in the vehicle or walk in the lane in case a secondary accident occurs.

 

Principle eight: multiple means to ensure defrost

 

Have you ever noticed that once there is mist outside, there will be mist inside your vehicle? Therefore, start rear window defrosters and rear-view mirror defrosters before a mist forms inside; in addition, aim the air outlet towards the front windshield. All these measures will help you disperse the mist in your vehicle.

 

Principle nine: rely on GPS in a strange location

 

What are you supposed to do when you are driving in foggy weather in a strange place? An electronic navigator will be best, since it stores all road information and can guide you along a set route. Even though drivers can’t see indicative marks, the GPS will remind you when to make changes and also prevent you from getting lost.

 

Summary:

 

One word may summarize above-mentioned principles, and that is: “slowly”. Due to poor visibility caused by foggy weather and the impossibility of wearing infrared night-vision goggles while you are driving, you must drive slowly for safety purposes.

 

If your vehicle is equipped with a night vision system, that would be of great help in foggy weather. In addition, drivers who head to other places in foggy weather should tune in to local traffic radios or browse websites of local traffic administration bureau to learn whether some roads have been closed. This information will help you to choose an appropriate route.

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