In Control at All Times.Even the best and safest drivers sometimes encounter emergency driving situations. Knowing what to do and how to handle your car can mean the difference between a close call and a serious accident. Learn how to survive an emergency driving situation with these helpful tips.
- Brake gently.
- Concentrate on maintaining steering control. Steer straight ahead.
- Continue braking gently.
- When the car is under control, pull completely off the roadway.
- Keep your eyes on the road.
- Slap the accelerator pedal hard with your foot.
- Shift into neutral. While this may cause damage to your engine (over revving), it is certainly better than a high speed crash.
- Brake to stop.
- Pump the brake pedal rapidly and hard several times. This will often build up enough brake pressure to stop the car.
- Shift into low gear and look for a place to slow to a stop.
- Try the parking brake. If it is working, hold the brake release handle so you can let off on the brake if the rear wheels lock and you begin to skid.
Running Off the Pavement
- Hold the steering wheel tightly and steer straight ahead.
- Stay on the shoulder.
- Ease up on the accelerator and brake gently.
- When the car is under control, turn back onto the roadway slowly at a lower speed when it is safe to do so.
- Pull off the roadway and stop the car as soon as safely possible.
- Turn off the engine.
- Get out of and away from the car.
A Final WordDriving is basically a decision-making process that is dependent on perceptions and judgments. To drive intelligently and safely demands that the driver not only see objects in his area of travel, but also that the driver recognizes and understands their meaning or implication for safety.
This ability to recognize and interpret what is seen is called perception. The perceptive driver readily searches out those clues important in a traffic situation and adjusts his or her driving accordingly.
A "seeing" driver may observe some children playing on the sidewalk. But a "perceptive" driver viewing the same situation recognizes that the children could dash into the street without warning and adjusts his speed accordingly. This advance understanding gives the perceptive driver command over the situation. The driver can react quickly, smoothly and safely to the first clues of potential hazard.
As we grow older, we need more time to perceive a situation, organize the information gathered, and react. Many accidents are caused by following too closely. Be prepared to stop. It is extremely important to concentrate on the driving task at all times and to be alert to those clues as they are presented to us in any given traffic situation.
Download Entire Driving Tips Booklet in PDF format.*