ICBC reminds drivers to slow down on wet roads as we head into fall

    VANCOUVER, Sept. 21 /CNW/ - This weekend marks the first days of fall,
and with that comes changes to the weather. ICBC is reminding motorists to
slow down, as wet roads can be particularly treacherous after longer periods
of dry weather.
    In 2006, during the months of September and October, police attended
approximately 400 crashes on B.C. roads, in which bad weather (rain, snow,
sleet or fog) was a contributing factor. These crashes resulted in
approximately 250 injuries and five fatalities.
    Rain creates slippery road conditions by mixing water with oily
substances from vehicle exhaust. During dry weather, oil, grease and dirt
settle into the pavement. The first hour of a steady rain draws the oily
mixture to the surface. If it rains long and hard enough, the mixture will
wash away, but then the water itself becomes the hazard. Traction is the key
to keeping your vehicle in control in both situations.

    When the roads are wet and slippery, motorists are advised to:

    -   Slow down. It can take up to three times the normal stopping distance
        to come to a complete stop on a wet or slippery road.

    -   Turn off the cruise control. Wet roads can cause wheels to spin and
        lose control. The only way to stop wheels from spinning and maintain
        control is to immediately reduce power. An activated cruise control
        system applies continuous power, keeping the wheels spinning. By the
        time you disengage the cruise control, you may have lost control.

    -   Stay in the middle lane. Water tends to pool in the outside lanes.

    -   Don't drive with bald or badly worn tires. Check your tires tread, as
        well as ensure they are properly inflated.

    -   Turn on your headlights and wipers. Daytime running lights do not
        activate the tail lights. Instead, turn on your low beam headlights
        which also illuminate your tail lights. This will ensure you have
        optimal visibility of the road ahead, and that other motorists can
        see you.

    ICBC invests in road safety to save lives and reduce crashes. Reducing
the number and severity of crashes also helps to keep insurance rates low and
stable by reducing claims costs. For more information on road safety, visit

For further information:

For further information: Attention Editors: A vehicle safety expert is
available for interviews. Pete Robichaud, ICBC Material Damage Research
Coordinator, can discuss tire selection and safety; Contact: Doug Henderson,
(604) 982-1332; Kate Best, (604) 982-2480

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