Fog can occur at any time of year, but it tends to occur more frequently with the changing of the seasons in many parts of the United States. As fall begins to give way to winter, fog on highways can pose an extremely dangerous and often deadly hazard. The hazard is magnified when drivers don’t know how to drive in fog and fail to cautiously reduce their speed when driving in foggy conditions.
Even though fog is often unexpected and visibility can deteriorate quickly, truck drivers need to quickly adjust to meet conditions — whether or not other motorists do.
Most weather-related accidents are preventable. Use the safety tips below from the National Safety Council on how to drive in fog:
- Slow down! Even if you know the road very well, still slow down. The fog may be “covering up” a collision in front of you, which would prevent you from having adequate time to properly react.
- Use low-beam headlights and fog lights for best visibility. Turn on your lights even in the daytime fog and be alert for other drivers who may have forgotten to turn on their lights. It is important to be seen.
- Turn on your four-way flashers. This will give vehicles approaching you from behind a quicker opportunity to see and notice your vehicle.
- Watch out for vehicles on the side of the roadway. Seeing taillights or headlights in front of you may not be a true indication of where the road is ahead of you. The vehicle’s driver may be disoriented by the fog, and the vehicle may not be on the road at all.
- Use roadside highway reflectors as guides to determine how the road may curve ahead of you.
- Use wipers and defroster as necessary to maximize visibility.
- Listen for traffic you cannot see.
- Don’t drive faster than your vision, reaction time and stopping distance permit.
- Don’t change lanes or pass other vehicles unless absolutely necessary.
- Don’t stop along the side of the road, unless absolutely necessary. Find a safe parking area to stop at. If you pull off the road, turn on your hazard flashers immediately.
The best advice for driving in heavy fog: Don’t! As Schneider’s number-one core value states: Safety First and Always — nothing we do is worth harming ourselves or others.
What are your best safety tips for how to drive in fog?