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Volkswagen Tiguan Owners Manual: Driving crosswise on a slope

Fig. 156 Steer downhill along the fall line.

Fig. 157 On a slope, always exit on the uphill side of the vehicle.

Read and follow the introductory information and safety information firstIntroduction to the subject 

Driving crosswise on a slope is one of the most dangerous off-road driving situations ⇒ .

Even if it seems harmless, never underestimate the difficulties and hazards when driving crosswise on a slope. A vehicle perpendicular to the slope of the hill can become uncontrollable and slide away, tip, or roll over. This could cause severe or fatal injuries to all occupants.

Driving at an angle to the slope

Before driving crosswise on a slope, check whether there is a different, safer route.

If you have to drive across a slope, first make sure the ground is firm and even along your route. If the ground is soft or slippery, the vehicle is more likely to slip away to the side. Make sure that the angle does not become too great due to surface unevenness. This can make the vehicle tip and roll over.

The steeper the slope across which the vehicle is moving, the more important it becomes to make sure the wheels on the lower side do not run over holes or depressions. The wheels on the high side must never run over protruding rocks, tree stumps, or other obstacles.

If the vehicle threatens to tip, immediately steer downhill into the fall line and gently accelerate ⇒ Fig. 156 . If it is not possible to steer down the fall line, steer uphill and gently accelerate.

The vehicle center of gravity should be as low as possible. The weight of all passengers should be evenly distributed. Taller or heavier passengers should sit on the higher side of the vehicle. Luggage on the roof should be removed and heavy objects should be secured, as the vehicle could tilt due to the sudden shifting of objects in the vehicle ⇒ .

While driving across the slope, passengers on the rear bench should always sit on the uphill side of the vehicle. In extreme cases, passengers on the downhill side must get out of the vehicle until the hill has been safely crossed.

Exiting on a hillside

If the vehicle comes to a standstill at a significantly tilted angle on the hillside, all passengers should exit the vehicle on the uphill side ⇒ Fig. 157 . This applies even if the uphill door is hard to open. The uphill-side door may swing shut due to its weight or carelessness.

Warning

Never try to drive crosswise on a slope, especially one that is too steep for your vehicle. The vehicle could slide sideways and tumble down the slope. To reduce the risk of accidents and serious injuries:
  • Never underestimate the difficulties and dangers of driving crosswise on a slope. Never take routes or risks that could put you or your passengers in danger. If you cannot go on or have doubts about the safety of your route, turn back and take a different route.
  • When driving crosswise on a hill, the vehicle can lose its hold, slide sideways, tip or turn over and roll down the hill.
  • Make certain that the wheels on the downhill side of the vehicle do not run over holes or depressions. Make certain that the wheels on the high side of the vehicle do not run over rocks, tree stumps, or protruding objects.
  • Before driving crosswise on a hill, check whether it is possible to steer into the fall line along the selected route. If this is not possible, select a different route. If the vehicle threatens to tip, immediately steer downhill into the fall line and gently accelerate ⇒ Fig. 156 .
  • If the vehicle is stopped a hillside and is laterally tilted, avoid sudden and uncontrolled movement in the vehicle The vehicle can lose its hold, slide sideways, tip, or turn over and roll down the hill.
  • If the vehicle is stopped at while pointed crosswise on a steep slope, make certain that no one exits the vehicle through a door on the downhill side. This can shift the vehicle center of gravity to the downhill side. The can tilt or roll over and roll down the hill. To help minimize this risk, always exit the vehicle through the doors that are facing uphill ⇒ Fig. 157 .
  • When getting out, make certain that doors opened on the uphill side are not closed carelessly and do not swing shut due to their own weight and injure anybody.
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