Driving tips for high winds

high wind

A national severe weather warning has been issued for the whole of the United Kingdom, with the worst affected areas set to be in the North West.

High winds and rain are expected, and the Met Office has issued a “Be Prepared” warning in relation to gusts which are predicted to reach over 100 miles per hour in Scotland. The rest of the UK is set to be battered by wind speeds reaching around 60 miles per hour.

With high winds, come the potentially destructive consequences which may affect road users.  Trees could be uprooted, buildings could be damaged and driving becomes much more hazardous as vehicles drift between lanes on the Motorway.

Whatever your location in the United Kingdom, it is likely that you will feel the effects of the storms which are due to hit this evening.

Our advice for driving in high winds:

  • Check for travel updates before driving
  • Leave plenty of time for your journey
  • Pay attention to police warnings regarding travel safety. If you are advised that it is unsafe to drive on a particular route then it is always with good reason

If you are already on your journey and the wind speed picks up to hazardous levels:

  • Keep both hands on the steering wheel to avoid being blown off course. High sided lorries, caravans and bikers are particularly at risk
  • Slow down. Be wary of other cars being blown off course and falling debris
  • Find a safe place to stop and wait until the conditions clear
  • Keep warm clothing in the car and ensure that your mobile phone is fully charged in case of an emergency

Remember, the higher your speed, the more at risk you are of being blown off course, and you will be less likely to avoid fallen debris in the road.  The Courts take road conditions into consideration when sentencing offenders for most offences such as driving without due care and attention, dangerous driving, and speeding to name just a few.

Pay attention to the road conditions, and heed weather warnings like the ones which have been issued today.

By ensuring that you only drive when necessary, are prepared for the journey ahead, and remember to slow down whilst on the road,  you will give yourself the best chance of remaining safe throughout the stormy weather which is to come.

Written by Expert Motoring Lawyer, Alison Ashworth – Head of Motoring Law at Forster Dean Solicitors.

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