Hydroplaning is one of the threats that drivers should always watch out for during the rainy season. When the tires encounter more water than they can handle, the water pressure in the front of the tire pushes water underneath, forming a thin layer of water between the tires and road. The tires, in effect, float above the road and thus lose traction. Hydroplaning can cause the car to skid or slide uncontrollably.
Drivers should know that the first 10 minutes of rainfall pose a greater risk than any other period. The reason is that the water immediately mixes with the oil residue on the road and creates a slippery surface, whereas after that 10-minute period the water will begin to wash away the residue. Not all the residue will disappear, so drivers must be careful at all times, slowing down and avoiding large puddles.
Safe driving will not always prevent hydroplaning, so drivers should know how to react if it occurs. First of all, they should avoid applying the brakes; to do otherwise will cause the car the skid and lose even more control. Second, they should turn into the slide, that is, in the same direction that the vehicle’s rear is pointing. They must do this until the vehicle realigns itself and they regain control, after which they can pull over.
Drivers are sometimes to blame for hydroplaning incidents, for example by letting the tread on their tires wear down. When negligent acts behind the wheel or negligent maintenance contribute to a car accident, the victim may be eligible for compensation. According to the rule of contributory negligence, victims must prove that the other side’s negligence was greater than theirs; otherwise, they cannot receive damages. A lawyer might assist with the filing and even handle negotiations with the other side’s auto insurance company.