Drive to the conditions

Driving too fast is a leading cause of serious injuries in road crashes. The faster you travel, the more likely you are to crash as you have less time to respond to danger. If you crash at high speed, you are more likely to be seriously injured or killed.

Road conditions

Slow down and take particular care:

  • on narrow, winding roads where you can’t see far ahead and other drivers might be crossing the centre line
  • on bends, because you’ll lose traction if you’re going too fast
  • on gravel surfaces to make it easier to keep control of your vehicle and avoid throwing up gravel, which could hit your or someone else’s windscreen
  • on slippery roads, so it’s easier to keep control of your vehicle
  • at road works, to keep the workers safe and to avoid losing control on an unfinished piece of road.

Other road users

Slow down and take particular care:

  • in areas where lots of trucks are on the road, they take longer to stop and have different speed limits to cars
  • at holiday times when lots of visitors are on your local roads; they’re often going slower looking for places to stop or turn unexpectedly
  • when you are sharing the road with cyclists; they have less protection if there’s a crash
  • in areas where there are lots of pedestrians, eg near schools, sports grounds and shopping malls.

Weather conditions

Slow down and take particular care:

  • in rain, snow and ice because it takes longer to stop after you brake and you’re more likely to loose control if you need to brake suddenly
  • in fog, rain and snow that reduce visibility (keep your headlights on dip)
  • in extreme wind, strong gusts can move your vehicle in its lane or make your vehicle less stable
  • in bright sun, especially in winter and at dusk when the sun is bright and low in the sky and sunstrike can suddenly reduce your vision.

Related information

Last updated: 7 July 2014

Last reviewed: 12 June 2014