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Correcting a Skid

Know what to do if your vehicle skids.

In rear-wheel driving automobiles, you should stay off the brakes and gradually ease off the accelerator. Turn your wheels in the direction the rear end of your vehicle is skidding. If the rear end of the vehicle skids right, steer right. If the rear end of the vehicle skids left, steer left. When front-wheel drive vehicles start to skid when traveling at moderate speeds, you should accelerate slightly and steer in the direction you want to go.

If there is no room to accelerate, shift into neutral or push in the clutch. Remember, front-wheel drive vehicles have positive, accurate and quick steering; the vehicle goes exactly where you point it. Four-wheel drive vehicles have a tendency of giving the driver a false sense of security.

Therefore, slower speeds on slippery surfaces are extremely important. When traveling at moderate speeds, you should accelerate and steer into the direction of the skid. 

At higher speeds, or in the event there is no room to accelerate, you should push in the clutch or with automatic transmission vehicles, shift into neutral.


A hard surface roadway is very slippery just after it starts raining. Water combines with the road dirt and oil to form a slick film between your tires and the roadway surface. When the water on the roadway becomes deeper, another hazardous situation occurs: hydroplaning. This occurs when your tires ride on the water and not on the roadway surface.


Most skids are the result of driving too fast for the road conditions on slippery roadways. The key to safe vehicle operation is slower speeds. Rain reduces visibility and increases the possibility of a dangerous skid. Slow down and be alert.