Even though it doesn’t make the road slick, fog can lead to dangerous driving conditions. And if you add severe weather or darkness to the mix, fog can be extremely hazardous.

Whether the fog rolls in as you leave for work in the morning or settles in after a rainstorm, remember these tips to ensure a safe drive — even if you’re a seasoned driver.

Stay home or get off the road

The best advice for driving in the fog is don’t. The safest thing to do is to stay home. But if you’re already out driving and hit a patch of dense fog, pull off the road into a safe area and wait it out. Put on your hazard lights to make sure other cars can see you. If you have any flexibility in your schedule, take a break rather than continuing to drive in dense fog.

Stay focused and don’t let distractions put you at risk for an accident

Stay completely focused on driving. Turn off the music, put your phone away and ask passengers to stay quiet. You’ll need to focus entirely on driving because driving in fog lessens your reaction time.

Reduce your speed

Fog reduces your reaction time because you won’t be able to see any hazards (like an animal or another car) until they are very close. It may sound simple, but driving slowly is one of the easiest ways to protect yourself. Driving below the speed limit allows for more time to react to slow cars in front of you, debris on the road or any other hazards you may encounter.

Create more space between your car and vehicles in front of you

In addition to slowing down, leave plenty of distance between your car and the car ahead of you. Following too closely is one of the top causes of pileups. During foggy conditions, cars are more likely to come to a stop suddenly, so it’s important to have more space between your vehicle and others.

Brake slowly and do not stop on the road

Whenever you need to brake to turn or pull off the road, do it as slowly as possible. The longer your brake lights are on, the more time other drivers have to see them and react.

Don’t use cruise control

In hazardous conditions like fog, you need to drive actively. You may need to change speeds frequently according to traffic and other situations around you. Turn your cruise control off, especially at high speeds.

Keep an eye on reflectors

Even in the fog, your headlights will illuminate reflectors on the road. The yellow reflectors mark the middle of the road while white reflectors mark the side of the road. These reflectors can help you stay in your lane as you drive.

Turn headlights down

It seems like high beams should improve visibility, but that’s not the case with fog. Bright lights reflect off fog and make it harder to see where you’re going. In fog, you’ll want to use fog lights (if your car has them) or low beams. Even during daytime driving, you should turn on your headlights so other vehicles can see you more clearly.

Roll down your window

While rolling down your window won’t help you see, it may help you hear if other cars are nearby. It can also alert you to sirens or emergency vehicles that may be helping with a crash ahead.

Fog can come on quickly, and it can lead to hazardous situations. Follow these suggestions to increase your chances of arriving at your destination safely.

Do you have questions about how your current auto insurance covers fog and other weather-related accidents? Contact Thorp & Trainer at 401-596-0146 to review your policy and discuss policy options that make the most sense for you and your family.