Flooding is a dangerous force of nature that occurs after a heavy period of rainfall, making it extremely hazardous to even attempt to navigate the road. If you live in an area that is prone to flooding, you should consider moving your car to a safe place when you first become aware of the warnings. Unfortunately, even trying to play it safe can come with its own risks since moving your vehicle can be a daunting situation in itself. Whatever you do, never downplay the potential dangers of this precarious scenario.
Below is a list of some facts you should keep in mind, which can help keep you safe in the event of a flood:
- Flash floods occur quickly and without much warning. In fact, you might not even get a warning that one is approaching.
- You should never attempt to drive through a flood that you cannot walk through. Even if the flood is minor enough to drive through, you will still be unable to see any dips in the road. Flooding could also potentially wash away the road’s surface, leaving only the ground beneath.
- Even 5 inches of water can reach the floor of most motor vehicles, which can easily cause the loss of control or stalling since the water will begin to get sucked into the exhaust pipe.
- If you absolutely end up having to drive on a flooded part of the road, try to remain in the center, where the water is the least deep.
- You are not the only driver on the road, so try to pass through flooded sections one car at a time to avoid driving through water against other approaching vehicles.
- Cars can start to float when there is only a foot of water, which results in a total loss of control.
- If the water reaches a height of 2 feet, this is enough to sweep away most vehicles, even large four-wheel drive cars, so do not even try to attempt to drive through fast-moving water. You will get swept away.
Tips for Navigating a Flood
Generally, a good rule is to avoid driving in a flood altogether, but if you are already out on the road in the midst of heavy rainfall, or it is unavoidable for some other reason, here are some tips on how to drive in a flood:
- Always pay attention to barricades. They are there for a reason, so do not simply drive past them or you risk putting yourself in danger.
- Never try to drive through standing water on roads or in parking lots.
- Take additional safety measures if you are forced to drive through water and no alternate routes are available to you.
- Stay off your phone to avoid distractions. You are already in a dangerous situation, so do not make it worse by using your phone in the midst of it unless someone is severely injured and you need to call for assistance.
- Be aware of items that are floating downstream since they can trap or crush you if you are in their path.
- If your vehicle begins to stall, you might need to restart the engine to get to safety. However, remember that doing so could cause irreparable damage to the engine.
- If it is not possible to restart your vehicle and you are trapped in rising water, you need to abandon it to reach higher ground. If you cannot get to safety, call 911 or try to get a passerby’s attention by shouting for help.
Reston and Northern Virginia Car Accident Attorneys
If you were recently involved in a car accident and sustained injuries due to someone else’s negligence, you have a right to pursue fair and just compensation. At Hall & Sethi, PLC in Reston and Northern Virginia, our legal team has over 65 years of collective legal experience that we will put to work for you to ensure you are able to hold the responsible parties accountable for their reckless actions.
Get started on your case today and contact our team at (703) 991-1949 to schedule a consultation with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney at our firm.