As the Fall weather rolls in to change the leaves on the trees, so does it change the weather. When the weather conditions shift, the common driving hazards on the roadways shift as well.
It’s important to stay up to date with what you’ll face on the road, and understand the differences between Summer and Fall driving. Your upcoming leaf-peeping adventure should be safe and enjoyable.
Take the time to read through these helpful road safety tips for Fall leaf-peepers on the roadways.
The added danger of fallen leaves
Fall means that some roadways will have some coverage of fallen leaves. When moist leaves accumulated on the roadways, things can get pretty slippery pretty fast. If you’re driving a motorcycle, you should be especially aware of the danger of leaf coverage on the roads.
Keep your distance from other vehicles on the road, especially big trucks. It takes an 18-wheeler a lot longer to stop than another car. You don’t want to be in a truck accident when you’re just trying to sneak a peek at some pretty leaves.
If the temperatures in the area in which you are traveling fall below freezing, fallen leaf coverage can turn into a dangerous patch of ice. It’s wise to be cautious and aware of this sneaky danger on the roads in the Fall.
Wet weather ahead means slippery surfaces
Driving in Fall means that the weather will likely be damp. You may have to contend with rainy days and foggy nights. If the temps drop fast enough, you could also deal with patching ice on the roads.
Remember to set your headlights to low beams while driving through a foggy area at night. Brake slowly if you’re required to slow down on a bridge or overpass, as they are the first to freeze.
There’s nothing underneath to help the road retain heat, so you’ll see ice on a bridge before anything else.
Fall means fewer hours of daylight
Taking a road trip for leaf-peeping in the Fall means that the sun will set a bit earlier than you may expect. The clocks “fall” back in Autumn, and we get less sunlight than other times during the year. If you have trouble driving at night, you’ll need to adjust your road trip itinerary for the shortened day.
Proper vehicle maintenance for your travels
Your carriage should be fit for the journey. There are a few things you should check on your vehicle before ever heading out on your Fall leaf-peeping adventures.
- Check your headlights for quality
- Check your tires for quality
- Check your windshield wipers
- Make sure your brakes are good
- Pack an emergency kit for the trip
If your vehicle fails in the middle of nowhere, you’ll need a few things to survive what might lie ahead. It may be a while before you get anywhere, so keep blankets, water, and some simple foods on hand.
Image Credits: Alireza Lashkari