Advice issued to motorists in wet and windy conditions

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Motorists using the roads this evening are being advised to take extra care because of heavy rain and windy conditions.

Northamptonshire Police say that the roads will be busier than normal and drivers are asked to be patient and prepared for more difficult driving conditions.

Police have issued advice to motorists driving in wet and windy conditions

Police have issued advice to motorists driving in wet and windy conditions

People travelling further afield are advised to check local conditions before they travel.

The Environment Agency has issued flood alerts for a number of areas in the county and more information can be found on their website at www.environment-agency.gov.uk/homeandleisure/floods.

Information about weather forecasts and warnings can be found on the Met Office website at www.metoffice.gov.uk.

In addition, police have issued the following advice:

- Do not drive unless your journey is absolutely necessary.

- Take spare dry clothing, food, a flask of hot drink and if you have a mobile phone make sure you have the telephone number for contacting the emergency services.

- If you have to drive in a flooded area take care. Only drive through water if you know how deep it is. Many vehicles require only two feet of water before they float.

- If you have to drive through a flood try to drive in the highest section of the road if it is safe to do so. Drive slowly and steadily to avoid creating a bow wave.

- Driving fast through standing water is dangerous - tyres lose contact with the road and you lose steering control in what’s known as ‘aquaplaning’. Watch out for standing water, trying to avoid it if you can, and adjust your speed to the conditions. If you do experience aquaplaning, hold the steering wheel lightly and lift off the throttle until the tyres regain grip.

- Driving fast through standing water can cause expensive damage - the air intake on many cars is low down at the front of the engine bay and it only takes a small quantity of water sucked into the engine to cause serious damage. All engines are affected but turbo-charged and diesel engines are most vulnerable.

- Do not drive through flood water if a vehicle is travelling in the opposite direction.

- Don’t try driving through fast-moving water, such as at a flooded bridge approach - your car could easily be swept away.

- As you drive slowly through standing water keep the engine revving by slipping the clutch, otherwise water in the exhaust could stall the engine.

- Test your brakes thoroughly after leaving the flood water.