By April Lynn Downing
Texas is dry. Texas never, ever gets rain … until the week of Sept. 19. So during this week as I try to dodge the pouring rains I inevitably get caught in a torrential blast.
I am often an over-cautious driver but when it comes to rain and wet roads I think caution should be a priority.
Apparently, many San Antonians are not on the same page as I am. I see people barreling down the highway weaving in and out of traffic while the roads are slick and dangerous.
I urge drivers to remember you are not the only person on the road. That old lady driving slow in front of you is someone’s much-loved grandma and that soccer mom in the minivan just may have kids with her. Every law you break, whether it deals with speeding or passing, is a risk on not only your life but every life around you.
If you still want to be selfish and keep driving like a maniac, how about thinking about your own car? That beloved vehicle that gets you from A to B, that you wash every week, and that you cry over with every new scratch and ding could be hurting because of your driving.
I contacted the Logos’ new automotive columnist, Gaby Gonzales, to find out just what precautions, from a mechanic’s point of view we should be taking.
“Even if the road is just a little wet, you should drive slower than the speed limit,” Gonzales said. “When you see that there are areas in the road that have a high level of water, try your best to avoid them. If you are not able to avoid such areas, be sure to have both hands on the wheel, that means no cell phones! Concentrate on driving, even [as little as] 3 inches of water can push your car off the road.”
Gonzales also said to brake sooner than normal and never to cross water that is running. As we say in Texas, “Turn around don’t drown!” In as little as 6 inches of water one risks stalling their vehicle and ruining several vital parts that make the car go!
Let me take this a step further and say even when it is not raining we should stop driving like we own the road, like our lives are more important than everyone else’s and that whatever we have to do and wherever we are going is more important than everyone else’s agenda. It is a selfish thing to speed, to tailgate and weave through heavy traffic.
Protect yourself, your car and most importantly everyone else that is on the road with you. Leave earlier if you tend to speed on rainy days so you don’t have a reason to and keep with the flow of traffic.
E-mail Downing at firstname.lastname@example.org