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Learn how to navigate your vehicle through flooded roads

Do you know what to do if you encounter a flooded road? Many motorists lose their lives needlessly to floodwaters by attempting to drive vehicles through flooded areas. The following tips could save your life.

-- Never drive around barricades on flooded roads.

-- Even when there are no barricades, don't drive your car through high water.

-- A typical car can be swept away by a foot of rushing water. Even if your car doesn't get caught up in the flood waters, your engine can be permanently ruined if water gets into it.

-- Rushing water erodes bridges and highways, making them unsafe and unstable even if only a few inches of water covers the road.

In some circumstances like a flash flood, you could be faced with the untenable choice of having to drive through high water in order to escape a worse fate. If so, keep these tips in mind:

-- Estimate the water depth as best you can by noting how well other vehicles are navigating it.

-- Don't enter water with live power lines dangling into it.

-- Once you are in the water, keep your vehicle moving steadily. Do not stop or accelerate too quickly.

-- Be wary of large trees or other cars or even buildings moving downstream that can crush you and your car.

-- Once out of the high water area, make sure that your brakes still work by testing them at low speeds on a safe stretch of road. You may need to dry them by depressing the brakes with the left foot and accelerating at the same time with your right.

If inclement weather brings out the worst driving behaviors and you get into an accident with an at-fault driver, preserve your rights to compensation by filing a claim for any damages or injuries before the case proscribes.

Source: Progressive, "Flood Safety Tips," accessed July 08, 2016

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