Effects of this summer’s weather on roads & commercial drivers
It wasn’t too long ago we were worrying about the sudden cold snap, the Beast from the East and the horrible potholes left behind by icy weather. Throughout June and July, however, we’ve seen a stark contrast in the weather, with temperatures reaching record highs.
The Met Office has issued various weather warnings over the last couple of months – from higher than average temperatures to intense thunderstorms and heavy downpours. All of these extreme weather conditions can have a considerable impact on the roads and on commercial drivers too, so it’s important to take note of any necessary preparations in advance.
While it currently feels a bit cooler than it has been in recent weeks, temperatures and amounts of strong sunlight are still fairly high for the time of year. The intense heat can be a significant issue for drivers, particularly those making long-haul journeys, as they’re more likely to become restless and uncomfortable inside their warm cabins for extended periods.
Remember to take precautions to keep cool and hydrated during long journeys or in case of any unexpected traffic. Road surfaces also tend to absorb more heat in direct sunlight than what we typically feel in the air, so it’s good to be mindful of softening tarmac that can greatly affect the grip of your tyres.
Rain and thunder
Following several weeks of intense heat, increased air pressure has resulted in short and sudden bursts of rain and thunder. As the drier ground struggles to soak up large volumes of water, the potential risk of flooding in some areas has begun to rise.
More surface water on busy roads makes it more likely for spray mists to affect visibility. With the school holidays upon us, the roads are expected to become busier than usual as holidaymakers frequently travel across the country.
The varied weather conditions create all sorts of separate factors that, when combined, stress the need for drivers to allow plenty of extra time for their journeys.