Are you planning the ultimate road trip this summer? Are you craving a change of scenery from busy city life? Considering scenic drive through long windey country roads? If so, you should be aware that these types of road can produce significantly more hazards than urban roads.
Below are some key tips for those who use country roads infrequently.
People who use rural roads often will no doubt have witnessed many near misses – often caused by drivers taking bends in the road too quickly. The correct technique to adopt when driving on winding roads with sharp bends is to slow your car ahead of the bend to a speed which will allow you to stop if something or someone suddenly appears as you turn a blind corner. If you brake and change down before a sharp bend, your vehicle will be in a better position to accelerate away once you’re clear of it.
Motorists used to driving in built-up areas may be accustomed to driving at the speed limit. Speed on a country road can be a tricky thing. The idea of this maximum limit is that you can drive at that speed, as long as you know the road is safe. Posted speed limits can sometimes be deceptive and it’s best not to see them as a target. On some roads the national speed limit of 60mph might be too quick for the road, so keep assessing whether you’re at the right speed for the conditions and whether you feel in control.
You may encounter a slow moving vehicle, such as a tractor, several times on a single journey alone. It is best not to attempt an overtaking manoeuvre on these roads especially, because you do not know what is coming in the other direction. If it is essential to overtake a slow moving vehicle, then do so when you are certain it is viable and safe to do so.
Sharing the road
Country roads tend to be narrower and often do not have a broken white line in the middle of them. You may well have to share the road with animals, tractors, pedestrians and cyclists, which may require you to drive slower and in some cases pull over, or even reverse into a layby to let oncoming vehicles pass by. Make sure you give cyclists and horses plenty of room if you’re overtaking.
Country roads are often unlit so remember to make use of your full beam at night so you can see more of the road. Remember to switch them off when you see oncoming traffic approaching so that you don’t blind other drivers.
During the winter, some country roads aren’t gritted. This can lead to ice and black ice forming on the road, causing a hazard which can result in you possibly ending up in an accident.
If it has been raining, the roads will become slippery causing your tyres to lose grip. Driving sensibly, reducing your speed and increasing your distance from the vehicle in front of you will help you when driving in hazardous conditions.
If you are unfortunate and are involved in an accident our speciality team at Jackson Boyd can get you the compensation you deserve. Click here to contact us online or call 0333 222 1855 to speak to a member of our specialist team.