Driving in pouring rain or fog: the dangerous mistake of keeping your headlights on

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During days with poor visibility, those with a lot of rain or fog, it is essential to reduce your walking speed. But it is also essential to use the vehicle’s lights correctly to send the correct information to other drivers and not create confusion that would end up causing an accident.

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The discussion about when to turn on the emergency lights, popularly known as headlightsproduces as great a dichotomy as there are drivers in this country.

It is common to see incorrect use of beacons in different situations. One of the most common is poor visibility conditions, generally caused by heavy rain or fog banks.

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49.9% of Argentine motorists believe that it is correct to drive with the direction indicators on in conditions of poor visibility such as fog or rain, according to a survey published a couple of years ago by the CECAITRA Road Observatory, of the Chamber of Road Affairs . Software.

Turning on the emergency lights is essential warn other drivers of something that is happening or about to happenin this way we protect others and ourselves from what can happen behind the vehicle we are driving.

The regulation lights and fog lights should be enough to be seen. Otherwise you need to stop in a safe place.

But sending the wrong message can produce a bad and unnecessary decision that can result in an exaggerated maneuver or even a crash.

Headlights in the rain and fog, yes or no?

The cars are equipped with a series of headlights whose purpose is not only to illuminate to see and be seen at night, but also allows use a communication code to send information to other vehiclesWe must not forget that almost 90% of the information a motorist receives comes through his eyes.

The emergency lights or flashing lights are identified by a red button or a red triangle, which is generally located in a nearby and quickly accessible point inside the passenger compartment. Once pressed, at least four lights at the corners of the body (almost always amber) come on intermittently.

Flashing light or emergency lights button.Flashing light or emergency lights button.

Second National Highway Code 24.449the “emergency flashing lights: must be used to signal parking in a dangerous area or carrying out risky manoeuvres”, as specified in part E of article 47.

This is why many people believe that driving in areas with poor visibility is “dangerous” and, therefore, justifies turning on the headlights. The reality is that this way the only thing it will do is generate tension and confusion to other drivers. These vehicles already travel in similar conditions.

The first reaction a driver will have when they see a car with its headlights on is that the vehicle is stopped or about to stop, which could force an unnecessary maneuver that could end badly.

The truth is that rear lights (which should normally be on when driving on roads or highways) or rear fog lights are more than enough to be seen in poor visibility conditions.

However, if the rain is so heavy or the fog is so thick that visibility is reduced to a few metres, It is always advisable to look for a safe place to stop. as early as possible (preferably not on the shoulder) and wait for conditions to improve.

It is common to see many drivers activate their hazard lights, even in situations of good visibility, when traffic suddenly stops to warn of this situation. This decision is correct, even if this message is also overused. What is inadvisable is to continue with these signs if traffic continues to flow, even if very slowly.

Source: Clarin

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