Motorists urged to use caution after dry spell

Fire Services in Wicklow are urging motorists to drive with caution as the dry spell comes to an end.

A number of collisions were reported today as a result of wet surfaces, Sunday is also set to see long spells of rain.

During a prolonged dry spell a build-up of oil and rubber deposit develops on the road. When the weather breaks, this deposit mixes with rainwater and the road becomes hazardous. The resulting greasy road surface increases stopping distances and the risk of a skid.

Drivers and motorcycle riders can get caught out with this change in road conditions so the advice is to slow down and increase braking distance.

General tips for road users in the changing conditions include:

  • It takes longer to stop a vehicle on wet roads so slow down and allow extra distance between you and the vehicle in front, 4 seconds at a minimum (use the 2 second rule and repeat it twice).
  • Take special care when driving behind trucks or buses as they generate a considerable amount of spray which reduces your visibility,
  • Watch out for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.
  • Use dipped headlights at all times of poor visibility not parking/side lights and fog lights
  • Check tyres and replace them if the thread depth is below 3mm.
  • Be mindful of Aquaplaning on roads where 100/120kmh speeds apply. Aquaplaning occurs where the tyre thread fill with water and the driver is at risk of losing control of the vehicle.
  • Drivers should slow and leave plenty of space when passing pedestrians and cyclists

Forecast

TONIGHT

Tonight will be very mild and humid with a mix of clear spells and showers, most frequent and prolonged in the west and northwest. Temperatures not falling below 14 to 17 in moderate to fresh southerly winds.

TOMORROW – Sunday 24th July

Tomorrow will be a humid and breezy day. Showers or longer spells of rain over the western half of the country will become more widespread through the morning and afternoon with some heavy downpours and isolated thunderstorms. However, there will be long dry and bright spells also, especially in the east of the country. Highest temperatures of 17 to 23 degrees in moderate to fresh southwest winds.

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