If you find yourself driving in fog, with massively reduced visibility, it can be frightening. You feel like you just want to get off of the road because there’s no way that it can be safe to drive without knowing exactly where you’re going. You feel like you’re blind. This is especially unnerving for younger drivers, who may never have experienced it before.
But should you stop? Is that actually the safest move? People are often tempted to completely stop and wait for the fog to burn off or dissipate. They think that this is the safest option because the odds of crashing are just too high if they continue driving. Is this correct?
Here’s what you should do
You do not want to stop in the travel lane. Doing so just increases the odds that you will get rear-ended by another driver who doesn’t see you. It makes you feel safer to slow down because you’re not going to hit someone else, drive too fast into a corner or run a stop sign that you cannot see. But the truth is that you’re still at risk, and it may only be worse if you stop.
Instead, what you should do is slow down, turn on your hazard lights, keep your high beams off so that you can use your fog lights, keep your eyes on the road and then try to drive at a controlled, safe pace.
The benefit here is that slowing down gives people behind you more time to react. They may still be driving faster than you, but they have time to match your speed without causing an accident. Additionally, reducing your own speed increases your own reaction times to hazards ahead of you.
In some cases, you may need to stop
If you don’t think that you can drive at a safe place and you want to stop completely, then it is important to find a parking lot or simply to pull over to the side of the road. Just make sure that you’re not still in the travel lane. Pull all the way onto the shoulder and keep your hazard lights on.
If someone else does make a mistake in the fog and hits your vehicle, leading to serious injuries, then you need to know how to seek financial compensation.