Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Highway speeds - Keep your distance!
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 > Highway speeds - Keep your distance!

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BobsYourUncle

Calgary Alberta Canada

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Posted: 07/18/21 07:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It always amazes me how close people follow going highway speeds. They seem to think it's OK to follow 4 car lengths at 110K / 70MPH...

Yesterday afternoon, returning from a day trip to the Banff / Canmore area, traffic was fairly heavy. Nice day, a lot of people out.

I was at the wheel of our Nissan Rogue doing about 111K with the cruise on. Suddenly, I saw 2 deer, a doe and her fawn, at a fast trot coming right towards the highway from the right, on an angle directly towards the front of our car. DW and her 90 year old mother with me.

I jumped HARD on the brakes, a very dangerous thing to do in highway traffic but it was that or a collision. The doe passed about 40 feet in front of us and somehow made it between the back of the car beside us, and the front of the one behind him. I started to swerve into the left lane to avoid the fawn when it suddenly turned and ran back. I then stayed in my lane.
Quick mirror check, the guy behind me swerved off the road on the shoulder, hard on the brakes, to avoid hitting us, and had to stop fast to avoid the fawn. The Class A MH right behind him also took the shoulder. Not sure, but I think he hit the car behind us. He was following too close to slow down fast enough. Again, not sure.

As soon as I was clear of both deer I hit the throttle to get out of the way of traffic rapidly climbing towards my bumper. Success, I made it through without hitting anything or getting hit.

I watched the mirror as we left the scene. The MH and the car behind us were now both stopped on the shoulder, likely to exchange info and insurance. There were other cars now stopped on both shoulders, likely multiple collisions. Most vehicles were following too close. Maybe not, who knows?

Bottom line, keep your distance from the next car, pay attention to what's going on. Even though an open divided freeway tends to make people think it's all clear, a sudden emergency can show up in an instant like that.

I'm glad I was paying attention.


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ken56

Tennessee

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Posted: 07/18/21 07:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I believe this is the biggest problem we all encounter while driving. I don't understand the thinking of being 10 feet off the bumper of the vehicle in front of you. If people would space themselves out that would allow others to merge properly. It would allow for a safe stopping distance in emergencies like yours. I always keep my distance even when I'm not towing. Give others room to maneuver folks, it's easier on the insurance.

wa8yxm

Davison Michigan (East of Flint)

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Posted: 07/18/21 08:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In my younger days I would sometimes, on my lunch break, stand on a bridge and watch freeway traffic in Detroit, and count the seconds between the passing of the back bumper of one car and the front of the next One thous... And that was all. Later we had remotely operated cameras same half second was not uncommon.

I like to do 4 seconds (2 is recommended minimum)

One day we got calls about a stove in the road. Camera found a Gas Range, 2nd lane, South Bound I-75 2 miles north of where the callers said it was... I zoomed out so we could watch approaching traffic.

The cars always came down in the 2nd lane (law says use right but hey, we don't mind more entainering this way) Last second the 1st car changed lanes and the two tailgaters.... underwear I suspect.

Finally 3 cars and a pickup
First car.. last second as above
2nd Underwear I suspect
Rather sure #3 tagged the bumper on #2
Pick up did now stop. swerve, Slow down, or hit the brakes.
He place kicked that stove a good quarter mile or more and onto the shoulder.

I turned the troopers around, Called the county road commission dispatcher back and told him to re-schedule for daylight pickup and the new location
He ask if Troopers moved it (They never got there.. They were on the way but never arrived)
Did some kind citizen stop (No he did not stop.. he did however move it)

Then called the post in case they needed witnesses for the accident reports.nobody ever reported..


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valhalla360

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Posted: 07/18/21 08:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Good advice but this is a situation that technology will solve over the next 10-20yrs as adaptive cruise becomes standard.


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agesilaus

North Florida

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Posted: 07/18/21 08:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The other rules I follow are to never travel next to a semi for any longer than required to pass him or let him pass you. And secondly never travel behind a tank truck which are often filled with gasoline or worse hazardous materials.
There was a video showing a gasoline tanker on I75 losing control and ending up as a fireball in the median strip, circulating a few days ago.
Tanker explosion

And they carry dangerous cargo other than flammables too, acids, bases, cryogenic material like liquid nitrogen and hydrogen.


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JRscooby

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Posted: 07/18/21 08:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BobsYourUncle wrote:

It always amazes me how close people follow going highway speeds. They seem to think it's OK to follow 4 car lengths at 110K / 70MPH...

Yesterday afternoon, returning from a day trip to the Banff / Canmore area, traffic was fairly heavy. Nice day, a lot of people out.

I was at the wheel of our Nissan Rogue doing about 111K with the cruise on. Suddenly, I saw 2 deer, a doe and her fawn, at a fast trot coming right towards the highway from the right, on an angle directly towards the front of our car. DW and her 90 year old mother with me.

I jumped HARD on the brakes, a very dangerous thing to do in highway traffic but it was that or a collision. The doe passed about 40 feet in front of us and somehow made it between the back of the car beside us, and the front of the one behind him. I started to swerve into the left lane to avoid the fawn when it suddenly turned and ran back. I then stayed in my lane.
Quick mirror check, the guy behind me swerved off the road on the shoulder, hard on the brakes, to avoid hitting us, and had to stop fast to avoid the fawn. The Class A MH right behind him also took the shoulder. Not sure, but I think he hit the car behind us. He was following too close to slow down fast enough. Again, not sure.

As soon as I was clear of both deer I hit the throttle to get out of the way of traffic rapidly climbing towards my bumper. Success, I made it through without hitting anything or getting hit.

I watched the mirror as we left the scene. The MH and the car behind us were now both stopped on the shoulder, likely to exchange info and insurance. There were other cars now stopped on both shoulders, likely multiple collisions. Most vehicles were following too close. Maybe not, who knows?

Bottom line, keep your distance from the next car, pay attention to what's going on. Even though an open divided freeway tends to make people think it's all clear, a sudden emergency can show up in an instant like that.

I'm glad I was paying attention.



Why don't they put the "deer crossing" signs in areas where the traffic is lighter? The deer would be safer!
I don't understand how people can be old enough to drive, and not understand if your vehicle can stop as fast as the vehicle in front of you, that vehicle can still be stopping for nearly 2 seconds before you hit the brake. In other words, with less than 2 seconds between cars, he hits brakes you will likely hit his bumper before your brake pedal. Now with the high percentage of drivers that get in head first, (Put head in seat, then butt. Wiggle until completely between cheeks, start car) I much prefer the person behind me to be close. Both doing 60, I hit brakes, he hit going 5 MPH faster. If I can stop both before we use up my stopping distance, very little harm done. OTOH, if I get whoad to 20, and he is still at 60 at impact...

BobsYourUncle

Calgary Alberta Canada

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Posted: 07/18/21 08:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JRscooby wrote:


Why don't they put the "deer crossing" signs in areas where the traffic is lighter? The deer would be safer!

Wildlife signs abound everywhere. There is no particular place where deer cross. They jump the fence in farmers fields and cross wherever they want. It is very common around here to see herds of deer in a field.
People pay little attention to the signs.

This happened on the Trans Canada Highway, 2 lanes each way with a large median in the middle, just west of Calgary. Speed limit 110K

Lwiddis

Monterey, California

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Posted: 07/18/21 08:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It may solve the issue unless adaptive cruise control allows the “driver” to adjust the following distance.


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noteven

Turtle Island

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Posted: 07/18/21 09:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wonder about another phemo...phenoma... situation that I experience on lonely western roads..

You are cruising along all by yourself at whatever speed... and in the mirrors another vehicle appears...

It catches you after a few km/miles...

And then settles in 1 point 5 seconds off your stern and drives there ...

Why?

rk911

DuPage County

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Posted: 07/18/21 10:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:

Good advice but this is a situation that technology will solve over the next 10-20yrs as adaptive cruise becomes standard.


adaptive cruise: otherwise known as “i don’t have to pay attention...the car will save me”. until it doesn’t.


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