How to Drive Safely in a Hailstorm

You’re driving through a heavy rainstorm and you’re listening to a weather report, driving slowly, treating all intersections as though they have a stop sign and using your low beams. But suddenly hail starts to fall. Now what do you do?

Follow these safety tips so you and your vehicle will make it through the hailstorm safely.

  • Immediately stop driving and pull into a safe place. A garage or a parking ramp is ideal if you can find one. But even an underpass can protect your vehicle. A hailstorm has the potential to do considerable damage, and driving through the hailstorm can make the damage even more severe. When you stop your vehicle, make sure to pull to the side of the road and out of traffic, and then turn on your emergency flashers. Avoid ditches since water may rise quickly in them. You should also avoid parking near any trees or power lines since they could be knocked down in the hailstorm.
  • Stay inside your car. Finding shelter for your car is great. But remember that your car is also your shelter. Stay inside until the storm passes so your car to protect you.
  • Angle your car. Park your car at an angle to make it more likely that any hail hits the front of your vehicle. Your windshield is reinforced to protect you from rocks and debris that strike it, but your side windows are not. This makes side windows much more susceptible to damage in a hailstorm.
  • Protect yourself. Lie down in your vehicle face first and cover yourself with a blanket if you have one. This gives you the best chance of protecting yourself from debris whipped up by a hailstorm.
  • Stay connected. Keep the radio on and listen to the weather reports. This will help you know when it’s safe to begin driving again.

Next, learn how your insurance may cover hail damage.

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