fog

Driving your RV in the fog — clear and safe tips.

You can be driving your recreational vehicle on an otherwise beautiful day, when suddenly you’re engulfed in fog. Fog banks often lay in the lower wetlands in the early morning, and there are spots around North America that seem to spawn dense fog. High elevations also often pose poor visibility as you climb into a blanket of cloud, which is really the same thing.

Fog can be a very dangerous driving hazard. Statistics show that over 500 people in the United States every year are killed in vehicle collisions as a result of foggy conditions. Additionally, some 12,000 people are injured in the roughly 32,000 fog-related traffic accidents.

fog

So, how do we reduce our risks when confronted by such a weather event? Obviously, if the conditions are known prior to traveling, you can delay leaving until conditions are clear. But many times fog appears without warning while you’re on the road, so you must endure it in the safest manner.

Slow down and turn on the headlights. Switch on your emergency flashers if the fog is very thick. If your RV is mostly white, as many are, you will not be seen easily, so observe extra caution. Keep moving at a safe speed. Avoid pulling over to the shoulder of the road unless you can park well away from the roadway, at least one or two vehicle widths.  Many vehicles stopped on the roadside are struck by traffic from behind in such conditions.

Don’t use high-beam headlights in fog, because the tiny water droplets that make up the fog spread and reflect light, compounding visibility problems. With care and attention and good common sense you will emerge to the colorful world at the end of the dark grey tunnel.

For those that travel areas that are subject to foggy conditions, you might consider adding rear fog lights. Yes, I said “rear” fog lights!  These are very common on British autos and many built in Europe.  Essentially they are additional red tail lights that are the same intensity as the brake lights. They are turned on to make the rear of the vehicle more noticeable. The separate brake lights still operate normally. As an added benefit they can also be used as super bright back up lights in those dark campsite back-in events.

Peter Mercer — With Brighter View

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