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Six tips for driving in mist and fog

Advice from the Institute of Advanced Motorists

1. Clean and clear

The conditions that cause fog also cause windows to mist up. Dirty windows mist more quickly than clean ones, so it is important to keep your windows clean, and then use your wipers and the car heater (and air conditioning if you have it) to clear them. Be sure to clear your wing mirrors too so you can see traffic in them, especially in towns.

2. Light and bright

Switch on your dipped headlights in misty or foggy conditions. Do not rely on the fact that your car's lights automatically come on with the engine, as this may not put the rear lights on - and they are equally important. Only use your fog lights if visibility is less than 100 metres, but don't forget to turn them off when visibility improves. Do not use the full beam lights in fog as this will only obscure your visibility further. Simply use your dipped headlights to help you see further ahead and drive at a speed you can stop at within the distance you can see.

3. Wash it off

Fog can cause sprays of rain to sit on your windscreen so make sure you use your wipers on the intermittent setting throughout your journey. Keep your windscreen washer topped up with screen wash to rinse off any debris. If the fog is freezing fog, do not use your windscreen washer unless you have non-freezing washer fluid in them, or the screen will become covered in ice.

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