Hazardous driving - driving in fog safety tips

What you need to know when driving in fog

At some point, most van drivers have been forced to drive in hazardous conditions. Driving conditions can rapidly change due to the weather at any time, so understanding how to deal with them will not only make you a more prepared driver, but a safer one too.

Fog is one of the most difficult and dangerous weather conditions to drive in. While it’s more likely to occur during the winter, it can descend after any rainy night, making it a potential hazard all year round. Hilly and coastal areas are affected by valley fog and sea mists respectively, so even on the warmest summer’s day you could encounter foggy conditions.

We’ve compiled some driving in fog safety tips to help you out:

  • Should I drive my van in fog? With any severe weather condition, the recommendation is to drive only if it’s absolutely essential, but of course, it often is for businesses. Therefore, be prepared to drive with due care and attention.
  • Check your van lights: According to the AA, one in ten drivers relies on automatic lights. However, automatic lights won’t necessarily come on if it’s foggy and bright, as they’re light-activated. One of the most important fog safety tips, then,is to ensure you switch your lights on manually if necessary, as otherwise you may be almost invisible.
  • Set off early: Check the news and weather reports for your route to stay informed of delays and road closures. Make sure you leave in good time to avoid rushing or driving less carefully.
  • Dipped lights: Use dipped headlights, wipers and demisters to ensure you have the best visibility possible.
  • Three seconds: A key fog safety tip is to stay well back from other vehicles. Allow a minimum of three seconds between your vehicle and the one in front as the likelihood of sudden braking in fog is much higher.
  • Watch your speed: You should always drive within the advised speed limit or slower, in order to stop within the distance you can see. Don’t drive fast to get away from another vehicle which is too close.
  • Windows: Open your windows at junctions to listen for traffic if visibility is very poor.
  • Be alert: Bear in mind that other drivers may not have their fog lights on and will be very difficult to see. Pay extra attention at junctions or when joining motorways.
  • Switch off when necessary: The final one of our road safety tips for drivers is that you should only use your fog lights when you can see no more than 100m around you. When conditions improve, remember to switch off your fog lights as they could dazzle other drivers.

At Vanwise, we believe being a prepared and considerate motorist keeps both our roads and drivers safe. For more driving in fog safety tips, as well as a selection of used commercial vehicles available with flexible financing, pop into our branch in Harlow.