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February 20, 2018
AAA MICHIGAN ISSUES STATEWIDE FLOOD ALERT

Warm Temps, Rain and Melting Snow Increase Flood Road Risks and Hazardous Driving Conditions
DEARBORN, MI, (February 20, 2018) – AAA is issuing a Statewide Flood Alert as record-breaking unseasonably warm temperatures, heavy rains and melting snow are posing a triple threat when it comes to increased risks for flooding and hazardous driving conditions  throughout Michigan.  Wet roads increase the distance needed to stop safely, reduce the ability to steer a vehicle safely and increase the probability of a collision.  Heavy rain can limit visibility and safe driving conditions. AAA Michigan supports local law enforcement recommendations cautioning drivers and advises motorist to follow these tips:
AAA Tips for Driving on Wet Roads
  • Avoid Standing Water and Flooded Roads at all Times: There is no way to tell how deep standing water is on a flooded road and driving through it can cause a vehicle to stall and result in severe damage to the vehicle from:
    • Flooding the engine
    • Warping brake rotors
    • Loss of power steering
    • Short in electrical components

  • Slow Down and Leave Room: Slowing down during wet weather driving can be critical to reducing a car’s chance of hydroplaning, when the tires rise up on a film of water. With as little as ½ inch of water on the road, tires have to displace a gallon of water per second to keep the rubber meeting the road. Drivers should reduce their speed to correspond to the amount of water on the roadway. At speeds as low as 35 mph, new tires can still lose some contact with the roadway. Also, it is important for motorists to allow ample stopping distance between cars by increasing the following distance of the vehicle in front of them and beginning to slow down to stop for intersections, turns and other traffic early.
  • Avoid Cruise Control: This feature works great in dry conditions, but when used in wet conditions, the chance of losing control of the vehicle can increase. To prevent loss of traction, the driver may need to reduce the car’s speed by lifting off the accelerator, which cannot be accomplished when cruise control is engaged.
  • Check Tires: Make sure tires are properly inflated and have enough tread depth. This will allow the vehicle to have better traction and maneuverability on the road. Worn tires with little tread are much more likely to hydroplane on wet pavement, resulting in a loss of braking power and steering control. Check the tread depth of your car’s tires by inserting a quarter upside down into a tire groove. If you can see above Washington’s head at any point, it’s time for new tires.
“Motorists need to exercise extreme caution and slow down when driving on rain-soaked roads,” said Susan Hiltz, Michigan public affairs director for AAA – The Auto Club. “There continues to be a high risk for flooding.  If staying off the roads temporarily or minimizing drive time is viable for some drivers, AAA recommends that they exercise that safety option. According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly 1.2 million traffic crashes occur each year on wet pavement with more than a half million injuries and 5,700 deaths.”
AAA also recommends that drivers:
  • Keep windshields clean, inside and out.
  • Keep wipers clean and in good condition.
  • Keep headlights clean.
  • Increase the following distance between your vehicle and the one in front of you.
 
*Media outlets are encouraged to share this information via their broadcast, digital and social media platforms.

 
AAA in Michigan celebrated its 100th Anniversary - A Century of Service in 2016 and has over 1.4 million members across the state. It is part of The Auto Club Group (ACG).  Connect with us on Facebook and LinkedIn.
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America.  ACG and its affiliates provide membership, insurance, financial services and travel offerings to over 9 million members across eleven states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana.  ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 57 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety. Motorists can map a route, identify gas prices, find discounts, book a hotel, and access AAA roadside assistance with the AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

 

About The Auto Club Group
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, travel, insurance and financial services offerings to approximately 9 million members across 11 states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with nearly 55 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety.

About Auto Club Group Traffic Safety Foundation
Established by AAA – The Auto Club Group in 2010, Auto Club Group Traffic Safety Foundation, Inc. (ACGTSF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and public charity dedicated to producing a significant and continuous reduction in traffic crashes, injuries and deaths in the communities targeted by its efforts. ACGTSF provides programs, education and outreach to increase public awareness about the importance of traffic safety and improve driving behavior. ACGTSF is funded by voluntary, tax-deductible contributions from organizations and individuals who support ACGTSF’s purpose.


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