You’re out for a nice autumn drive, taking in the fall colors…but you need to be careful!

Why?

After a rain, a layer of dead leaves on the payment can be downright treacherous and slippery. The water helps the leaves begin to decompose, making them a Driver Safety in Fayetteville NC little slimy and slick on the underside. That, along with a film of water and a smooth blacktop surface, can be a recipe for trouble.

Here are some suggestions for driving on leaf-covered roadways in the fall months:

--Keep an eye on the road ahead, especially after a rain. If you spot a stretch of pavement that’s covered with leaves, be prepared to slow down.

--Check your tire pressure. In addition to causing premature tire wear and hurting fuel economy, low tire pressure can affect handling and steering response.

--Slow down on offramps, curves and corners if leaves are present.

--Be prepared for longer stopping distances on leaf-covered pavement.

--Watch for your lane width and shoulder locations. A layer of leaves can cover pavement markings, making for some confusion.

--Never park on a pile of leaves. Your muffler and catalytic converter are very hot, and parking on a pile of dry leaves can easily ignite a fire.

--If possible, try to do more of your driving in the daylight hours. The days are shorter in winter, of course, and daylight savings time means an earlier sunset…which can all make it more difficult to see leaf-slick pavement.

--Check your tires’ tread depth. Take a penny and stick it into the tread grooves, Lincoln head down. If the tread reaches Abe’s head, that’s  the minimum allowable tread depth of 2/32”. Try it again with a quarter. Does the tread reach Washington’s head? That’s  a tread depth of 4/32”. One more time with the penny – if the tread surface touches the Lincoln Memorial, that’s a healthy 6/32” of tread, meaning your tires should be good for awhile.

Driver safety is important year round, but slick leaves on pavement in autumn can present a special challenge. If it’s time for a set of tires for your car, make an appointment with us at Black’s Tire & Auto Service!