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The nurse’s guide to dealing with dangerous driving conditions

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Fighting Floods

Applying your nursing knowledge is crucial when commuting during a flood. You know that subtle signs during a patient assessment may indicate trouble ahead. When facing floods, strong waters may be more dangerous than they appear. In seemingly shallow pools, beware of what may be hidden below the surface.

Recommendations:

DO be mindful of alternate routes. If approaching a flooded road, turn around and use an alternate route.

DO allow for longer stopping times with wet brakes. After driving through water, gently apply pressure to the brake while maintaining a slow speed with the other foot to dry off brake.

Contraindications:

DON’T attempt to cross standing water. Even if it looks shallow, the water could be deeper than it appears. There may be concealed dip in the road, or the road surface may be completely washed away.

DON’T underestimate the dangers of standing water.

  1. 6 inches will touch the bottom of most cars, resulting in loss of control or steering.
  2. 1 foot can float many vehicles.
  3. 2 feet can sweep away many vehicles, including SUVs and trucks.

Next: Braving Blizzards →

Sara Beth Furey, RN, BSN, CPN
Sara Beth Furey, RN, BSN, CPN is a nurse and professional writer. Her unique educational background consists of a BSN from Indiana University (IUPUI) and a BA in both English and biology from Butler University. Writing pursuits have sent her foraging for wild edibles, exploring auto repair shops to learn about “hubside manner” and investigating countless other topics. Past publications include magazine articles as well as educational materials.

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