Monday, August 31, 2009

Prep Tip - Safe Following Distance

Once again traffic safety simplified......when in traffic practice creating safe distance space between yourself and the next vehicle ahead - this also applies when coming to a halt in traffic at a signal.
You can see that in the top picture that your options to get out of harms way in an emergency - such as a road rage incident or if the vehicle becomes (or is) disabled are diminished by your lack of adequate operating space.
This is dangerous.
Instead, practice this rule of thumb: if you can see the rear tires of the vehicle in front of you when stopped in traffic, then you will have sufficient room to maneuver when you have to.
This is also very useful during inclement weather and on slippery pavement when the operator in front may spin out and lose control.
We liked to practice this so it became second nature during emergency vehicle operations when you were called to respond immediately to a variety of emergencies - if you were stuck in place like in the top picture.....drivers had to resort to unnecessary and time consuming tactics to get out of traffic and respond.
This directly relates back to earlier discussions about having good situational awareness.
Bottom Line: Allow proper spacing between vehicles when stopped so you can respond if necessary to protect yourself.

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