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Hydroplaning: its causes and how to avoid it

South Carolina drivers know that when the rainy season hits, they run the risk of hydroplaning on the road. This occurs when the tires encounter more water on the road then they can handle. The water pressure in front of the tires pushes that water underneath, creating a thin layer of water between the tires and the road. The wheels are essentially floating above the road. The thicker that layer becomes, the more traction that is lost by the tires.

This can ultimately cause the vehicle to slide or skid uncontrollably and possibly crash. However, drivers can usually avoid hydroplaning if they drive slowly and avoid large puddles. They should also be aware that the first 10 minutes of rainfall are the worst because the liquid mixes with the oily substance residue on the road and immediately creates a slippery surface. Succeeding periods of rainfall will wash away most of that residue.

Still, there are times when hydroplaning is unavoidable. Drivers should keep three things in mind if they hydroplane. First, they should never apply the brakes; applying them will cause the car to lose more control. Second, they should turn into the slide -- in the same direction that the rear of the car is heading. Third, the motorist must wait for the car to realign itself with the road.

Failing to follow these directions can lead to car crashes. Accident victims who suffered serious injuries and setbacks and are considering third-party insurance claims will want to speak with legal counsel. The lawyer could hire experts to obtain the police report and gather the proof against the at-fault driver. Perhaps the defendant was speeding or had tires with shallow tread depth. Once the case has been established, the lawyer could proceed to negotiations.

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Smith & Griffith, LLP
1102 North Main Street
Anderson, SC 29621

Phone: 864-261-1571 (Personal injury)
Phone: 864-261-1912 (Workers' compensation)
Fax: 864-222-2257
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