Long drives during rain may sound very appealing, but there is a significant amount of risk involved. In most metro cities, the roads become waterlogged due to a poor drainage system after heavy rain, which causes many cars to break down. Another reason to exercise caution when driving in the rain is hydroplaning, which is actually much more dangerous than a simple breakdown. Several online videos substantiate this claim. Here, we have a video from Kerala in which a hydroplaning bus crashes into a Nissan Terrano on a wet road.
Hydroplaning can occur even at low speeds. Always maintain at least 3mm tread depth.
The bus driver will be blamed, but I believe the car’s encroachment in the opposite lane instigated the bus driver’s panic braking and steering. pic.twitter.com/tLjrLWBpxd
— Road Safety Guy (@RSGuy_India) September 18, 2023
The video has been shared by the Road Safety Guy on X (formerly Twitter). The exact location of the accident is unclear; however, from the audio of the people, it is evident that the accident occurred somewhere in Kerala. The video is footage from a CCTV camera installed on the road. We can see a narrow two-lane road with relatively light traffic. A bus is approaching from the upper right-hand corner of the screen, and it appears to be traveling at a higher speed than usual. There is a small curve on the road that obstructs the driver’s view, preventing them from seeing traffic approaching from the opposite direction.
As the bus approaches the camera, a Nissan Terrano SUV moves in the direction from which the bus is coming. The road is wet from the rain, and the bus driver spots the car very late. As the bus turns, the rear wheels begin to skid, and the tail swings out completely. The bus starts moving sideways and encroaches into the opposite lane. The Nissan Terrano driver has no choice or time to react. The rear of the bus collides with the car, causing the Terrano to veer off the road.
Immediately after the crash, the bus driver slows down, presumably to check on the occupants in the car. The rear body panels of the bus show some damage. Details about the occupants in the Terrano are not known; however, it appears that they may have escaped with minor injuries. The accident seems to have been caused by hydroplaning. The wet road and the bus’s tail sliding out as it approached the curve are evident. The driver likely had already lifted their foot off the accelerator, but because this is a large vehicle, it would take more time to regain control.
What Is Hydroplaning?
Hydroplaning, or aquaplaning, occurs when a thin layer of water forms between the tire and the road. When this happens, the tire, which is the only point of contact with the road, stops responding to steering input, and the car loses control. The only way to prevent this is to quickly release the accelerator and allow the car to slow down and regain traction. The condition of the tires also plays a crucial role in such accidents. The tires must have at least 3 mm of tread depth, and it’s essential to check their condition before embarking on long drives or driving during the monsoon season to avoid such incidents.