It’s been an extremely busy afternoon for both the AA Roadwatch crew and our AA Patrol force who have already attended 25 Members whose cars have either become stuck in flood water or have broken down due to water in take. We’re also expecting many more call outs as the side effects aren’t always immediate.
Flood water, particularly sea water, can play havoc with vehicle electrics causing intermittent or erratic operation of lights and wipers for example. Sometimes the consequences can be more dangerous, and we’ve seen cases where all the airbags have deployed suddenly and without warning some time after a vehicle was recovered. If flood water has reached floor height or got inside the vehicle it’s best to telephone for help before attempting to recover it.
In one incident in Balroddery this afternoon we received a call from a very frightened AA Member whose car was floating. Be advised that vehicles can quickly become unstable in moving water – 12 inches of water moving at only 10kmph is enough to float the average family saloon.
We’ve also had a spate of call outs from Members who have had to pull over as their wind screen wipers had stopped working leaving them with no visibility.
Some of the busiest areas for breakdowns this afternoon have included:
PLEASE TAKE CARE AND HEED THE FOLLOWING ADVICE:
Floods and standing water
Only drive through water if you know that it’s not too deep. Drive slowly and steadily to avoid creating a bow wave. Allow oncoming traffic to pass first and test your brakes as soon as you can after leaving the water.
Don’t try driving through fast-moving water, such as at a flooded bridge approach – your car could easily be swept away.
Watch out for standing water, trying to avoid it if you can, and adjust your speed to the conditions.
As you drive slowly through standing water, use a low gear so the engine rev’s are higher; water in the exhaust could otherwise damage the catalytic convertor.
If you break down in heavy rain don’t prop the bonnet open while you wait for the patrol to arrive. The engine will be more difficult to start again if the electrics are all rain-soaked.
Visit the AA Roadwatch site here to find out about the worst affected routes.
Miriam O’ Neill, PR Exec at AA Ireland began working in the AA in August 2010. Miriam’s core activities on a day to day basis include management of the AA’s media relations programme, generation of quality coverage in support of key business lines, provision of content for AA social media channels and the AA customer Ezine, regular broadcast interviews, occasional events management and interactions with the large AA customer base on motor policy issues.