Following reports across Lincolnshire of vehicles driving through closed areas with flood water up to their headlights, the County Council is warning motorists to respect road closure signs – and has issued what it calls five surprising reasons why driving through water can be dangerous.
The authority has also witnessed motorists removing or driving past signage and David Davies, Principal Maintenance Engineer at the county council, said:
“We know it’s frustrating to encounter a road closure sign, especially if – to the naked eye – the way ahead looks like you could navigate it with care.
“However, we close roads for very good reasons which may not be immediately obvious, including damage to road surfaces, submerged hazards, the potential for damage to vehicles and the water’s depth.
“We’ve even seen some people removing signs to drive through flood water, which is not only putting themselves and their passengers in danger but irresponsible for any unsuspecting vehicles which may follow later.
“Please respect any road closure signs – the detour will always be worth the potential alternative.”
Here are Lincolnshire County Council’s top 5 reasons not to drive through flood water:
- Surprisingly, it only takes 1 foot of water to float many cars and two feet of flowing water can sweep even 4-wheel-drive vehicles away.
- Water can hide many things in the road – dips, boulders, even removed manhole covers which are prone to coming loose in floods.
- Some roads can be closed as the surface has been undermined, so even if the water doesn’t look too deep, the highway may be crumbling below you.
- Just six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars; this depth can cause water to be sucked in resulting in loss of control, stalling, damage to the brakes, electronics or transmission. Reduced air intake can also damage engines, especially diesels.
- If you’ve removed a sign to drive through a flooded road, the situation may worsen after you’ve passed, leading other unsuspecting motorists straight into it.
The authority’s particular areas of concern today are the B1184 known as The Gride between Sibsey, Hobhole Bank to Old Leake and the A57 Dunham Bridge.
Flooded roads can be reported to the county council on 01522 782070. Any other flooding should be reported to the Environment Agency on 0800 80 70 60.