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Although you might not think about them much, clouds contribute to picturesque landscapes, make up one-third of the water cycle and help sustain life on Earth. Typically, clouds hang anywhere from 1,500 feet to 60,000 feet above the ground. You might not know that fog is actually a type of cloud. Considering Colorado’s high average elevation, the Centennial State is particularly prone to fog, which causes very poor driving conditions.

Which types of lights should you use in fog?

Like most clouds, fog consists of water vapor. Fog with more water droplets has lower visibility. These low-hanging clouds obscure your vision by causing light to bounce off of water droplets.

Virtually all modern cars have at least five types of lights: taillights, brake lights, low-beam headlights, high-beam headlights, and fog lights. You may think that stronger lights can help you see through fog, but, believe it or not, this isn’t true. Powerful lights send more photons through the air, which results in more photons bouncing off of water droplets, further obstructing your visibility.

Avoid using your high-beam headlights while driving through fog. Before getting on the road, test out your low beams and your fog lights. Use whichever one that works better.

Make sure that your rear fog light is on, too. After testing out your fog lights before leaving home, get out and make sure the rear fog light works. This will help other drivers see you, which will, in turn, help prevent auto accidents.

Don’t use cruise control

Cruise control can cause hydroplaning on wet roads. Even if it doesn’t cause full-blown hydroplaning, it can still lead to skidding or spinning tires.

Use pavement markings as a guide

Roads have reflectors, lane markings, and other features that can help you navigate the roadways during low-visibility conditions. They’re there for a reason, so use them!

Although these tips can help, don’t be afraid to pull over if you don’t feel comfortable driving. Being late for work or other obligations is much better than potentially risking your safety.