When the wind picks up, drivers need to take notice. And not only should you take notice, you should also change your driving habits.

As you know, high winds can move into the area at any time. Just when you think everything is calm, a wind gust comes through with the potential of causing major damage.

As a motorist, there are things you should and should not be doing if the wind picks up. Here are some tips for controlling your vehicle:

– Slow down. This is the best thing you can do, as crosswinds make it difficult to control your vehicle. The slower you are moving the easier it is to stay in control, thus avoiding an accident.

– Keep both hands on the wheel at all times. By doing so, you are in better position to control the vehicle and react to sudden gusts.

– Keep your distance from large vehicles. You don’t want to drive in close proximity to buses or commercial trucks during a wind storm. These large vehicles are more difficult to control in such conditions.

– Watch for debris. High winds can bring debris onto the roadway. From tree limbs to trash, you never know what you will come across.

If possible, avoid the road when winds pick up. This will ensure that you are safe from a motor vehicle accident.

It is never easy to drive in strong wind, but this is something you have to get used to if you live in South Carolina. Knowing how to deal with this condition will help keep you safe.

Source: Esurance, “Driving in high winds,” accessed Dec. 29, 2015