Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Many parts of Dubai and Sharjah were enveloped in a thick blanket of fog that spread across various other parts of UAE especially in the northern emirates.

A lot of residents are excited as these cold and fog blanketed mornings are equivalent to the signs of a quick approaching winter. Nevertheless, this blog post urges you to contain that excitement as these fogs only mean more road mishaps and accidents among drivers. 

Even a little carelessness can lead to very damaging results. The lack visibility due to the fog makes all vehicles more vulnerable to accidents hence each of must take certain precautions.

 Early morning fog engulfs Sharjah. Photograph by Bushra Shahid

Dubai World Trade Centre covered with fog. Photo by Vanessa D'souza
For more photos, click here!

Here are top 10 tips that you need to keep in mind while driving in the fog:

1. Plan your route- Knowing your route can help take off some of the stress while your driving. It is also better to choose the safest route rather than the quickest.

2. Keep speed in check- Driving in the fog creates a visual illusion of moving slowly even when you are driving very fast.

3. Use low beam- High beams will disperse in the fog, making visibility worse for you and other drivers. Also, if your headlights have a dipped setting (aimed downward), use it. Make sure your full headlights—not just daytime running lamps—are on in fog even if it's during the day.

4. Keep the view clear- When fog is obscuring your visibility already, the last thing you want is fogged windows. Periodically, if not constantly, use the defroster and wind-shield wipers. Moisture can build up on the wind-shield both inside and out; the air conditioning setting will help keep moisture from building up inside.

5. Minimize your distractions - Don't listen to music or talk on your cell phone. Turn down distracting noises so you can listen for vehicles you cannot see. 

6. Use the side of the road as a guide-Use the right edge of the road or the painted white line along the right side of the lane as a guide for positioning the car in your lane. Approaching cars could blind you momentarily if you're looking at the center line.

7. Brake and signal early- If you miss a turn, never brake quickly or back up to the intersection. Remember the car behind you can't see any better. If you need to pull off the road and can do so only partially, or if your car unexpectedly stalls out, make sure you have some easily accessible emergency flares in your car.

8. Fuel up- Make sure your vehicle is topped up with fuel in case of delays caused by weather or related incidents.

9. Don't drive - If all you can see is fog and you aren't confident about the road ahead then stop at the nearest available parking.

10. Drive safe- Driving fast and carelessly not only puts you in danger but also all other drivers on the road. So be responsible and cautious and drive safely. 

By Syeda Nawab Fathima

The writer is a final year media and communications student specializing in journalism.