Driving Safely in Strong Winds

Motorway

When driving in strong winds it’s important to adapt your behaviour to the weather conditions that present themselves. Particularly, motorists should be on the lookout for vulnerable road users who could be blown off course and for fallen trees which could cause significant damage. To help you stay safe on the road, our AA Rescue team have put together some tips on how to adapt your driving during strong winds.

AA Rescue Teams Safe Driving Tips

  • Keep both hands on the wheel
  • Be ready for stronger winds and gusts on exposed stretches of road or when passing high-sided vehicles. For example, during strong gusts it can take up to 170metres to bring your car to a complete halt if driving at 120km/h, the current speed limit on a motorway.
  • Keep your speed down, not only will this give you more time to react if anything happens on the road ahead of you, but it will also make it less likely for your car to be blown off course by strong gusts
  • Take care and leave extra room around cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists. These road users are particularly exposed to the elements and at a greater risk of being blown off course. Avoid overtaking them where possible but if you must be sure to allow extra distance..
  • Allow extra stopping distance between you and the car in front of you and exercise addition caution when overtaking, especially  when passing high-sided vehicles and caravans
  • Watch out for debris on the road. Coming across twigs or small branches on the road could indicate that a tree or large branch has fallen on the road ahead of you. Similarly, partially fallen trees can hang above the sweep of your headlights. This can make them more difficult to spot when driving at night.
  • In the days immediately following strong winds, some trees which were weakened by the gusts could fall so it’s important to be vigilant even after the winds have eased.
  • Plan your journey carefully, checking weather and AA Roadwatch updates regularly.

Worried about a breakdown during windy weather? AA Membership is available from just €8.25 per month.