What is aquaplaning, and why it’s so risky especially during the monsoons

Monsoon has already arrived at several parts of the country. Going out on long drives during rain is an experience in itself. Rainy season also make roads even more dangerous. We have seen several reports where cars and motorbikes get involved in accident during rains. Most of the accidents that happen during rainy season is because of Aquaplaning of Hydroplaning. What is Aquaplaning or Hydroplaning? During rainy season, water is present on road all the time. There are even places where water gets collected and stays there. Whenever a car is driven through such pool of water at high speeds the drives loses steering control . This phenomenon is called Aquaplaning. Here we have a video that shows what Aquaplaning looks like.

The video has been uploaded by Shamindra Sengupta on his YouTube channel. In this video, we can seen clearly why it is not recommended to drive at high speeds during rainy season. The video is actually a footage that was recorded on a CCTV camera. It looks like the incident happened somewhere in Kerala.

It is raining and the road decent amount of vehicles in it. The road has a small curve and as you see, the Mercedes-Benz was carrying good speed as it hit the corner. There is water on road and the car coming ahead of the Mercedes can be seen splashing the water that is collected on road. As the Mercedes driver approaches the curve and hits the water puddle, the car goes out of control.

As the C-Class looses grip from the road tail of the car comes out and hits the signpost on side of the road. The car slides through the road and stop on road. It looks like the side airbags on the car got deployed after the impact. The ORVM on the car was also broken. Luckily, there were less number of vehicles on road when this happened. Just as the car stops, a Bus passes from the opposite side. If the car had not stopped, it would have straightaway rammed into the bus. Luckily, the driver looks uninjured and he can be seen coming out, checking out the damage and driving away.

What is aquaplaning, and why it’s so risky especially during the monsoons

The accident that we saw in the video above happened due to Aquaplaning. There was water collected on the road. At high speeds, the water collected on road acts as a layer between the road and the tyre of your car. When you hit such water filled sections, the tyres loses contact with the road and any input that you put from steering is all in vain. The tyres loose grip and the car starts sliding. Overspeeding, Low tyre pressure and bad condition of the tyres are some of the reason why the car might loose control.

It is always recommended to maintain a speed under 40 kmph while driving during monsoon. In case you are involved in such a situation, the steering will feel extremely light and the tachometer reading will be rising as the tyres do not have any traction. The only thing that you need to do in such situation is to lift your foot from the accelerator pedal and do not give any steering inputs. Once the speed decreases, the tyres will come in contact with the road.

Ajeesh Kuttan

Ajeesh, started 6 years ago with as an eager journalist passionate about bikes. His skills now encompass both bikes and cars, producing timely news reports spanning the auto sector. Beyond writing, Ajeesh excels in video production. Together with Shantonil, he participates in first drives and test drives for new car launches. (Full bio)