Coastal Driving Hazards: What to Watch Out For on the Oregon Coast

The Oregon Coast is one of the most beautiful and scenic drives in the United States. However, the region is also known for its unpredictable weather, which can create driving hazards. I myself have had to negotiate every one of these driving hazards on the Oregon Coast. Hopefully you won't have to. But if you do, remembering these valuable tips will help, a lot.

Sudden Rain and Hail

Rain and hail can be sudden and heavy on the Oregon Coast, causing limited visibility and slick roads. If you encounter rain or hail while driving, reduce your speed and increase your following distance. Use your windshield wipers and headlights to improve visibility, and avoid sudden braking or acceleration. Such storms frequently pass fairly quickly in Oregon. As for hail damage on my vehicle, I've only seen it once or twice.

High Winds

The Oregon Coast is also known for its high winds, which can be dangerous for drivers, especially on bridges and open highways. Be sure to reduce your speed and keep both hands on the wheel, as sudden gusts of wind can cause your car to swerve. Pay attention to signs warning of high wind areas and avoid driving large or high-profile vehicles in these conditions. Often, it can be best to pull over or just wait to travel in a nice comfortable hotel room off the coast.

Wildlife on the Road

The Oregon Coast is home to a variety of wildlife, including deer, elk, and other large animals. These animals can be unpredictable and may suddenly cross the road, creating a hazard for drivers. If you see wildlife near the road, slow down and be prepared to stop. Do not swerve to avoid hitting an animal, as this can cause you to lose control of your vehicle.

Curvy and Narrow Roads

The Oregon Coast is known for its winding, narrow roads, which can be challenging for drivers, especially those who are not used to driving on this type of terrain. Be sure to reduce your speed and use caution on these roads, especially around blind curves. Stay in your lane and avoid passing unless it is absolutely necessary.

Limited Cell Service

Many areas of the Oregon Coast have limited or no cell service, which can be a hazard for drivers in case of an emergency. Be sure to bring a map or GPS system and know your route in advance. It's also a good idea to let someone know your route and estimated arrival time, in case you need assistance.

By following these tips, you can safely navigate driving hazards on the Oregon Coast and enjoy the stunning scenery that this region has to offer.

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