Driving in different road conditions can be dangerous, especially if you don’t know what to do.
But we’re here to help you with that.
We’re going to go over common South Carolina road conditions — we’ll then list the safe driving tips to follow.
We’ll talk about what you can do and the things you have to avoid.
With this, you’ll be a much better and safer driver.
So let’s begin!
How to Drive Safely Through South Carolina Road Conditions
We’re going to show you tips on how to drive safely in/at:
- Work zones
- Rural roads
Driving at night poses a hazard simply because visibility is low.
When it’s dark, a lot of people struggle to see clearly even when there are lights on the road.
So if you’re driving at night, here are things you have to remember:
- If there are no oncoming vehicles, turn on your high beams. High beams make you see twice as far as low beams.
- If there are vehicles in front less than 200 feet from you, switch to low beams.
- If an oncoming vehicle uses high beams, don’t look directly at the light. Instead, glance to the right side of the road so that you won’t be momentarily blinded.
- Be actively searching for headlights to make sure you can see vehicles on the road.
- Be extra alert for pedestrians. Remember, they are much harder to see in the dark.
- Regularly check if you are still traveling in your lane. Use the pavement markings to determine if you’re driving too close to the curb or opposite lane.
- Do not wear sunglasses or colored lenses when driving at night.
Work zones may temporarily pop out of nowhere for road repairs and maintenance.
You can spot a work zone even before you get there because there will be warning signs that will tell you of the hazard ahead.
As much as possible, take a detour so you can avoid the inconvenience.
But if that isn’t possible, here are some driving tips to remember:
- Watch out for cones, signs, and barricades of where you can and cannot go.
- Workers may frequently cross the road. They should be wearing reflectors, yet you still have to be extra alert for anyone nearby.
- Slow down to give you time to react to anything that might happen in the area.
- If you need to merge with another lane, make a signal and wait for a vehicle to let you pass. Do not immediately change lanes.
Driving in rural areas is a lot different than driving in the city.
For one thing, there are fewer traffic lights and more rocky roads.
In some areas, there can be animals crossing.
If you’re passing through a rural area, here’s what to do:
- If you’re driving on gravel or dirt, increase your following distance and reduce speed. These roads make it harder to brake quickly.
- You might experience narrow roads. During these areas, avoid passing. If there’s only one lane, signal to the other car who comes first so you don’t hit each other. The rule of thumb is that the first driver that enters the road has the right of way.
- Some intersections won’t have traffic lights. Make sure to make a full stop before entering. If there are other cars, the first car that enters the intersection has the right-of-way.
- If there is a warning sign for animals crossing, check the sides of the road for signs of animals. Also, always so down so you can stop if one suddenly appears.
It’s a relief that South Carolina doesn’t have extreme winters.
However, like most states, it still gets ice and snow on the road.
When driving during the winter season, always remember these things:
- Equip your vehicle with snow tires. Snow tires have more traction on slippery roads.
- Keep your windows, windshield, and side mirrors clear.
- Use a defroster when you’re driving so the windows don’t mist over.
- Try to drive on the tracks where other vehicles have driven over.
- Do not use cruise control. On slippery roads, it’s always important that you stay alert and in control of your vehicle.
- Do not brake suddenly. This might cause your car to skid. If you have to stop, brake gradually a few meters from where you’re supposed to stop.
- Try to avoid hills as much as possible. But if you don’t have other options, drive carefully and increase your following distance.
Driving on curves may sound simple, but it’s also very easy to lose control of your car in these areas.
This is why you need to follow these safety tips:
- Never overtake in a curve. This is because you won’t be able to see approaching vehicles.
- Start reducing your speed before you enter the curve. It’s easier to control your car when it’s slower. You also don’t have to brake too hard to stop.
- Instead of stepping on the gas, ease off it and (if applicable) shift to a lower gear. Slowly step on your brakes but don’t step on them fully so that your car continues to move.
- Make sure you turn the wheel at just the right angle. Never too much or too little.
Sometimes, floods can be seen from afar, especially when there are already barricades blocking the road.
However, there are times when you don’t know that the water is already deep.
In case you enter a flooded road, here are things to remember:
- If the water is too deep, say 6 inches, try to turn around and find an alternate route. Some cars stall when the water is too high.
- Look for signs of how deep the water is. Look at a lamp post or a garbage can to check if the flood is manageable or not.
- If the water is too deep and there are no alternate routes, proceed to a higher area and wait for the water to subside. No need to rush to pass because it’s only going to be counterproductive.
Inspecting Your Vehicle
As a safety reminder, it’s a good practice to always check your vehicle before hitting the road.
Yes, you can be as careful as you like.
But if your vehicle is not in good condition, it won’t matter.
So here are things to check on your vehicle:
- Check the tire pressure with a pressure gauge at least once a month. The PSI on your tire should be the same as the number found on the gauge when you insert it into the tire.
- Check the tread depth of your tires. To do this, you can use a penny with Lincoln’s body. Your tires are already worn if you can see Lincoln’s full head. Replace your tires right away.
- Adjust your seat and mirrors to fit your driving style. Your feet should easily reach the pedals, so adjust the seat accordingly.
- Your rearview mirror should allow you to see the rear of your vehicle. You should also be able to see traffic behind you.
Yes, driving in different South Carolina road conditions can be challenging — and even a bit scary.
But if you are well prepared for it, then you’ll be a better and safer driver.
Remember, it’s a driver’s responsibility to know what to do when there are hazards on the road. It’s also their responsibility to make sure that their car is in good working condition.
So don’t forget these safety tips here.