The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins June 1, and forecasters are expecting an average year of storm activity. That means 13 named storms and two major storms (Category 3-5) are likely to occur during the 2016 season, according to Colorado State University’s Department of Atmospheric Science.
Weather science coupled with satellite technology have progressed in recent decades to the point that, although they can’t tell you ahead of time exactly when those tropical storms and hurricanes are going to occur, they can usually provide enough advance warning to help keep you from getting caught by surprise.
Still, you may find yourself on the road during high winds, and not just along the eastern coast during hurricane season. High winds can create dangerous driving conditions in any part of the country, at any time of year.
Severe thunderstorm winds, for example, can reach speeds of up to 100 mph, according to the National Severe Storms Laboratory. And, downslope winds coming off the western U.S. mountain ranges can also create hazardous conditions.
So, what’s the first rule of driving in high winds? Don’t.
If there’s a forecast of dangerous weather and it’s safe to stay where you are, do so. If you just can’t delay your trip, however, remember these guidelines to help increase your chances of coming through a windstorm safely:
No matter the weather conditions, always remember to buckle up and be prepared. Maintain your car in top working condition. Know the weather forecast, follow evacuation orders and map out a safe route. Keep an emergency preparedness kit in your car. And, review your auto insurance regularly. Is it a good idea to expand your collision or comprehensive coverage? Time to add roadside assistance or personal property coverage to your policy? Your independent insurance agent can help you protect your assets while minding your budget.
Distracted drivers, wet roads, uninsured motorists – all kinds of factors contribute to making the road a dangerous place. For more driving safety tips, check out the Driving and Car Safety area of our blog.
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