23/03/2018 14:20 SAST | Updated 23/03/2018 14:20 SAST

Safety Tips During This Flood 💦

Rain, thunderstorms and flooding have wreaked havoc in Gauteng, creating difficult conditions for pedestrians and motorists.

Heavy rain, thunderstorms and flooding have wreaked havoc in Gauteng. As a result, conditions are difficult for pedestrians and motorists.

Even if you're running late trying to get to work through flooded streets, remember that your life is worth more than getting to work on time, or your car.

According to eNCA, at least four people have lost their lives in the flash floods that have hit Johannesburg.

Here are some safety tips motorists can take as the wet weather prevails in Gauteng:

Technical tips

  • In heavy rain, use the brightest setting for your car's tail lights to improve visibility for the vehicles behind you.
  • Prevent fog from building up on the inside of your car windows as this dramatically reduces your visibility. Use the anti-fog features in most modern cars or open the window slightly.
  • Cloudy and rainy weather makes for poor visibility, so take extra care when passing other vehicles.

  • Avoid abrupt acceleration, braking and steering. Sudden stops and turns could result in skidding.

  • After driving in heavy rain for some time without using the brakes, or if you have to drive through standing water, apply the brakes lightly to dry them, especially if the vehicle is fitted with drum brakes.

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Flooded roads and bridges

  • Never drive across a flooded road or bridge. Back up and try a different route.
  • Stay on high ground.
  • If you have no option but to drive through an area with high water levels, drive slowly in a low gear, holding the steering wheel steady.

  • Do not drive through flooded areas unless you are sure that the water is below the bottom of the wheel rims. If you have any doubt, don't drive through the pool of water; rather find an alternate route.

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Stuck in floodwater

  • Don't walk into moving water unless it is extremely shallow. Just 16cm of moving water can knock you off your feet.
  • Do not stay in a car that may get flooded.
  • If you are stranded on an object above the floodwater, such as a tree or a building, stay put and wait to be rescued. Do not enter the floodwater.

  • If the vehicle you're in becomes submerged, continue to breathe normally until the water is at chest level, then take a deep breath and hold your nose. Swim to the surface as quickly as possible. If you don't know which way to swim, look for the light and swim towards it or release a small amount of air and follow the bubbles as they will be going up.
  • If you are swept into fast-moving floodwater outside of your car, point your feet downstream. Always go over obstacles, never try to go under.

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