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Traveling Through Flooded Roads: Is it Worth the Risk?


Have you ever experienced uncommonly harsh rains? Have you gotten stuck in a downpour with nowhere to go? With the extremely busy lives most of us lead, there’s usually somewhere we feel we need to be. When you’re trapped away from home or you have plans you can’t break, there can be an urge to do anything in your power to get to your destination in as timely a manner as possible. In a torrential downpour, however, you may want to think twice about hopping behind the wheel of a car.

Flooded roads can pose an endless amount of threats to a driver. It’s important to ask yourself if it’s really worth the risk.

The water may appear drastically shallower than it actually is. Unsurprisingly, as it continues to rain, water continues to rise. Even if you feel like you could make it across, there’s really no sense in not trying to find an alternate route. As water rises, your vehicle could easily get swept away.

Many people don’t understand the sheer force and power behind floodwaters. Another danger when driving through flooded streets is that items can always get swept downstream. Not only is this bad news because you could potentially float away with no control, but you’re also always downstream from something. Other cars might have gotten stuck and have started floating as well. Mailboxes may have been lifted out of the ground. If a large item is headed your way, your vehicle could get crushed.

It’s also important to keep in mind the permanent damage that could come to your vehicle when you’re trapped in floodwaters. If the water is deep enough, your vehicle might stall. If this happens and you attempt to restart your car, the damage will likely be irreversible. When water begins to fill the exhaust and the engine, not a lot can be done to get things back on the right track.

Many vehicles will start to float in just 30 centimeters of water. This means total loss of control of the vehicle with no real possibility of gaining it back. If you lose control of your vehicle or are unable to restart the engine, you should immediately abandon your vehicle so you don’t get swept away in the current and become trapped inside. In a situation like this, drowning can become a real risk.

According to our Utah friends over at Kramer Law Group, in many parts of the United States, rain causes more car accidents than snow does. A lot can be at stake in heavy rain and floodwaters. There might be that small voice in the back of your head gently nudging you to go for it, but in a situation where so much is at risk, it’s far better to play it safe.


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