The Road Safety Authority (RSA), is asking road users to exercise caution while using the roads over the weekend as Met Eireann has issued Orange and Yellow weather warnings for strong winds.
Drivers are being warned that on top of recent heavy rainfall and severe winds this has the potential to make road conditions even more hazardous so please exercise caution when using the roads over the next few days.
Road users in areas affected by the Orange Warnings for strong winds are advised to check local traffic and weather conditions before setting out on a journey.
The following advice is being given to road users on foot of the weather warnings.
- Drivers need to slow down and leave a bigger space between themselves and the vehicle in front in wet weather conditions. This is especially important on high speed roads such as dual carriageways and motorways where there is increased danger of aquaplaning.
- If the road ahead is flooded choose another route, do not attempt to drive through it. Flooded roads that appear shallow could be deeper than you think. They may also have trees or branches that have fallen that may not be visible.
- Road users should always follow recommended routes and obey signs closing roads to traffic.
- After going through water, drive slowly with your foot on the brake pedal for a short distance - this helps to dry the brakes.
- Drive with dipped headlights at all times.
- Control of a vehicle may be affected by strong cross winds. High sided vehicles and motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to strong winds.
- Beware of objects being blown onto the road. Expect road conditions to change quickly in high winds so reduce your speed.
- Watch out for falling/fallen debris on the road and vehicles veering across the road.
- Drivers should allow extra space between themselves and vulnerable road users, such as cyclists and motorcyclists as they may be blown off course by strong winds.
Advice to Pedestrians, Cyclists and motorcyclists;
- Visibility and light is reduced in poor weather conditions. Keep safe by making sure you can be seen. Wear bright clothing with reflective armbands or a reflective belt.
- Take extra care when crossing the road or cycling in extremely windy conditions as a sudden gust of wind could blow you into the path of an oncoming vehicle.
- Walk on a footpath, where possible and not in the street. If there is a footpath and it is safe to use, look out for falling debris from above, especially in urban areas.
- Walk on the right-hand side of the road, facing traffic if there are no footpaths.
- Cyclist should ensure that they and their bike are visible to other road users by investing in a good set of front and rear lights (white at the front, red at the back) and by wearing clothes that help you be seen on your bike such as bright and light reflective items.
Advice on severe weather driving tips is available on the RSA website or check out the RSA Facebook and Twitter pages.
See the RSA's severe weather warning videos created in collaboration with Teresa Mannion below: