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Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Top 5 tips for Driving During Wet Fall Months

Top 5 tips for Driving During Wet Fall Months

For those living along the eastern seaboard and the southeastern United States, the Farmers’ Almanac prediction of a wet autumn is no surprise for those squinting through a wet windshield on their commute home. Looking ahead to October, the warm weather will be back, but with humid conditions and more showers, some heavy at times.

While those in drought-afflicted states are thrilled to be finally getting rain, the sudden onslaught is overwhelming watersheds and drainages systems. Drivers need to be especially vigilant during heavy downpours. The best way to protect yourself is:

1. Be prepared

Now is the time to assure that your vehicle is road-ready. “Taking care of little things before they affect the performance of your vehicle is the best way to assure a safe driving experience,” offers Eric Bullock, Claims Authorization Representative at EasyCare. This includes items you can handle yourself like checking tires.Your tire’s wear bars are a good indicator of safety, but so is a penny.Place a penny in your tread head down.If you can see Lincoln’s head, it’s time to have your tires checked.

2.Turn on the lights

Make sure you turn your headlights on. In some states it is a law, precisely for the reason that it will help you see better and help other drivers see you too! It is also a good idea to check your brake lights, tail lights and turn signals to assure that they are in proper working order.

3. Don’t wait to brake

The wet pavement will take longer to stop than usual, and you just might hydroplane if you stop too fast.Leave additional room between you and the next car, brake slowly when needed and give yourself ample time to reach your destination.“Worn brakes will also increase your stopping distance.You should have them checked when you get an oil change or with tire rotation,” offers Bullock.

4. Stay centered

Water tends to pool on the outside lanes, as overflow rushes to find drainage.Drive in the centermost lanes to avoid those big puddles that can cause hydroplaning or loss of control.

5. Never cross blind

Be on the look-out for flooded roadways and take alternate routes if you anticipate flooding in certain areas.If the water ahead of you is moving/flowing or if you cannot see the bottom, do not attempt to cross it in your car.

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If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.