With the heavy rain we have been experiencing here in Boston, we thought it best to put a quick reminder about things you should do differently when driving in heavy rain.
1) TURN ON YOUR LIGHTS! As hard as it can be to see a gray car in low sunlight, it is even harder when there is heavy rain involved so be sure that both your headlights and tail-lights are on. It is now a law in the state of Massachusetts that you must use lights when you have your wipers on, so pay attention and help other drivers see you.
2) Drive a little more cautiously, but NOT TOO SLOWLY! Everyone treats driving in the rain differently, with some being a little too brave, and others going a different direction and going 40mph on the highway. Do not be the latter as you are just as likely to get in (or cause) an accident as the speeder cutting people off. Maintain an appropriate level of speed while traveling to reduce the risk of causing unnecessary braking and swerving of other drivers attempting to go around you.
3) Watch for standing water on the shoulders and outside lanes. The roads we drive on are designed to send water off to the side, but often the rain overcomes the drains and we run into pools of water on the edges of the outside lanes. Be careful to avoid these, and if that proves dangerous, at least slow down before hitting the puddle to avoid hydroplaning, which is what occurs when your tires float on the surface of the water and lose grip.
4) Overall, just pay closer attention to what is going on around you. Drivers behave very differently when there are other factors affecting their habits and having serious rain puts most drivers on edge. Watch the behavior of all drivers in your immediate area and keep your head on a swivel.