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How to deal with bad drivers in the rain? Some say lower the speed limit

A pedestrian walks in the rain.
A pedestrian walks in the rain.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

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When driving in Southern California, two things are almost guaranteed: first, there will be traffic, and second, it’s probably not going to rain.

This has been especially true over the last year as the Southland and the entire state of California deal with drought conditions. But winter is here, and with it comes El Niño. With El Niño comes rain, and with rain comes bad driving.

In a recent L.A. Times op-ed, The Atlantic staff writer Conor Friedersdorf tackles what he sees as drivers’ complete loss of all common sense once precipitation starts to fall from the skies. Most of us have probably seen motorists who don’t change anything about their driving habits, even when it’s raining or snowing.

What do we do about these drivers? Friedersdorf proposes a simple solution: lower speed limits in the five SoCal counties so that drivers are required by law to go 10 miles per hour slower in rain or snow than when driving conditions are ideal.

Do you think lower speed limits in inclement weather will make a difference in the number of traffic accidents and fatalities that happen during those kind of conditions? If not, is there another way? How do you change your driving habits when it starts to rain?


Megan McCarty, KPCC reporter covering transportation and mobility; read Meghan's article on L.A. drivers in the rain here

Conor Friedersdorf, staff writer at The Atlantic and a contributing writer to the Los Angeles Times’ Opinion section; his latest piece is titled “When it rains, L.A.’s drivers lose all common sense