After the torrential rains we’ve recently had causing wide spread damage to the road networks in some areas, many 4×4 owners are tempted to try their vehicles capabilities.
The snorkel is fitted, lift kits on and it’s a 4×4, so ‘no problem’ right? For the inexperienced driver this could bring disaster and a costly bill. We’ve all seen the news pictures of the gentleman being lifted out of the sunroof of his Land Rover begrudgingly leaving it behind.
The roads and terrain are treacherous places with deceiving ground conditions including hidden debris, voids and currents just to mention a few.
If you do find yourself in a situation not by choice here a few golden rules to remember and hopefully keep you out of trouble.
If your not sure of ground conditions walk your route first. If you are crossing sodden unmade ground, check ground firmness and composition. Hidden hazards – use stones to check wet mud and sand density, use sticks to check depths of water filled holes, watch surface water for speed of flow and be aware of under currents.
If you have a recovery strap secure it to the vehicle before attempting the obstacle or water crossing, then trap the other end into a window or other high point for easy access if required.
Check your vehicle’s ground clearance, not all 4×4’s are true off roaders.
Drive as slow as possible but as fast as required.
If you become stuck ‘STOP’ do not dig yourself in by revving and rocking. Immediately select reverse and slowly come back on your tracks. This will work 90% of the time.
Drive safely and cautiously, within your abilities, don’t take risks, if in doubt… don’t do it.
Keep in mind the above advice and all should be well. A good idea is to check you have a good phone signal before attempting your challenge, especially if you’re alone. Enjoy winter and drive safely.