Flash floods - advice from the IAM, road safety charity

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Road safety charity the IAM is offering motorists advice on driving in heavy rain, following Met Office warnings of torrential rain over the coming days.

Road safety charity the IAM is offering motorists advice on driving in heavy rain, following Met Office warnings of torrential rain over the coming days.

IAM chief examiner Peter Rodger said: "A suddenly very wet road surface increases the chances of slipping when braking or steering, which is a problem not just for motorists, but cyclists and motorcyclists too.

“When driving in wet conditions remember that stopping distances will increase, and visibility will be reduced. Drop your speed and give yourself more time to slow down.”

In cases of severe flooding, you should reconsider making the journey at all. If it is unavoidable, and you have to drive through deep water, the IAM recommends drivers take the following precautions:

  • Drive on the highest section of the road and don't set off if a vehicle is approaching you
  • Leave time and space to avoid swamping other cars and pedestrians
  • Drive slowly and keep going once you have started – make sure you have a clear run. In a manual car, keep the revs high by "slipping the clutch" (which means the clutch is not fully engaged) all the time you are in the water
  • If you can’t see where you are going to come out of the water, such as when approaching flooding on a bend, think twice about starting to drive into it
  • In deep water never take your foot off the accelerator, as this could allow water to travel up the exhaust pipe
  • Once you're out of the water, dry the brakes before you need them. The best way is to lightly apply the brake as you drive along for a few seconds, after checking nothing is following you too closely.

ENDS

Notes to editors:
1. The IAM has launched a new website, for biking advice and tips, bikingadvice.org.uk, with traffic updates, touring advice by country and all you need to know about events and local groups. Tips cover riding with pillions, in groups and night riding. There’s also a videos page and you can upload your touring photos and stories - get involved at http://www.betterbiking.org.uk.
2. Follow us on Twitter @IAMgroup.
3. Peter Rodger is the IAM’s chief examiner
4. The IAM is the UK’s largest independent road safety charity, dedicated to improving standards and safety in driving, motorcycling and cycling. The commercial division of the IAM operates through its occupational driver training company IAM Drive & Survive. The IAM has more than 200 local volunteer groups and over 100,000 members in the UK and Ireland. It is best known for the advanced driving test and the advanced driving, motorcycling and cycling courses. Its policy and research division offers advice and expertise on road safety.

ENDS ALL

Media contacts:
IAM Press Office – 020 8996 9777
press.office (at) iam.org.uk
ISDN broadcast lines available
iam.org.uk

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Tanvir Nandra
Institute of Advanced Motorists
02089969777
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