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Dangerous Driving Conditions - Country Roads

Car on Country Road

With the summer months nearly upon us, thousands of Brits will take to the narrow, bendy lanes and byways of Britain for days out. Unfortunately, Girl Motor often deals with the aftermath of country drives when they don't end happily. Many car accidents, injuries and sadly, deaths, take place on rural roads, making driving conditions in our beauty spots as dangerous as their urban counterparts.  

We look at the dangers of driving on country roads and share some safety tips for country driving.

Blind corners

Country roads can be very twisty as they meander around the lush green fields of the British countryside. They're often very narrow, too, sometimes no more than the width of one vehicle. This is an unfamiliar environment where visibility is severely restricted. Blind corners are frequent and accidents inevitable when there's little room to manoeuvre and drivers are going too fast. 

The consequence? If you have to make a claim on your car insurance you could be facing a hike in your insurance premiums and your no claims discount might be affected.

Your speed and reaction are critical if you meet another vehicle suddenly on a blind bend. Slow down on any bend where visibility is restricted to give yourself an extra second or two to react.  Keep as far to your side of the road as possible, but be aware that in the most rural areas, you may have to give way to allow another car to pass safely. 

Hedges 

Country roads are typically edged with hedgerows that can cause a problem to motorists travelling them. British farmers are generally very good at maintaining hedgerows, but they can still significantly reduce a drivers visibility, so drive slowly. Hedgerows can also conceal things like protruding tree stumps. If you need to pull over to allow traffic to pass, be careful not to scrape your car wing on one of them - it's another insurance claim waiting to happen!

Slippery roads

Agricultural vehicles moving around farmland can sometimes leave mud and other debris on the road that can be slippery, especially after rain, and will affect your car's grip. Watch out for mud or other farming debris - it can affect your stopping distance as effectively as rain or ice on the roads. Adjust your speed and distance from other traffic to reduce the risk of collision.

Vulnerable road users

Horses, road safety on country roads

Remember that you're not the only person who will escape to the country on a summer day. Along with other motorists that have exchanged the town highways for country lanes, you may encounter a high number of vulnerable road users during your day out. Cyclists, horses and even hikers are very common on country roads so be aware of them around the next blind bend, give them plenty of room and only pass them when safe to do so.

Slow vehicles

The last major thing to look out for when travelling on a country road are slow moving vehicles. These can come in many different forms, from caravans to farm vehicles. These machines often take up a lot of space on narrow country lanes and should be given plenty of room. 

Be aware of slow traffic around the next bend and only overtake when you are absolutely sure it is safe to do so, leaving the other vehicle plenty of room. Most of all, be patient! Many accidents happen when impatient drivers take risks.

Girl Motor - great car insurance for country folk and townies!

Call us on *0344 493 7743 or get a quote online.

*Calls cost 7p per minute, plus your phone company’s access charge.