3, 7, 15 second RULE for Staying Alive on the Highway
3, 7, 15 second RULE for Staying Alive
on the Highway:
In the USA (& Canada), the Leading Cause of Death from ages 8 to 25 is MV (Motor Vehicle) Accidents.
Safe Distances when Driving:
(Only first 2 minutes 30 seconds is relevant of this 4 min. video)
Because YOUR SAFETY not only depends upon YOU STOPPING IN TIME, but also on the CAR, SUV, or BIG TRUCK FOLLOWING YOU STOPPING IN TIME, you need to know and be aware of the STOPPING TIME of the vehicle(s) following you.
Whenever you come to an UNEXPECTED MAJOR SLOW-DOWN OR STOP, especially on high speed highways where people do not EXPECT major slow-downs or stops, IMMEDIATELY ACTIVATE YOUR FOUR-WAY HAZARD FLASHER LIGHTS to WARN VEHICLES BEHIND YOU THERE IS AN UNEXPECTED SLOW-DOWN.
In such an UNEXPECTED slow-down or SUDDEN STOP situation KEEP PLENTY OF SPACE BETWEEN YOU AND THE VEHICLE YOU ARE FOLLOWING (MINIMUM 3 TO 7 SECONDS) and look in your rear-view mirrors to make sure that the vehicle(s) behind you realize you are coming to a SLOW-DOWN or STOP. KEEPING A SAFETY BUFFER ZONE (MINIMUM 3 TO 7 SECONDS) will allow you to give the vehicle BEHIND YOU extra space and time to STOP or SLOW DOWN without rear-ending you. This SAFETY SPACE will also prevent the car/ truck that rear-ends you from pushing YOU into the rear-end of the vehicle in front of you!
ALSO look for and try to KEEP AN ESCAPE ROUTE OPEN at all times so that you can pull onto the RIGHT or LEFT SHOULDER in case the vehicle behind you cannot, or does not slow down or stop in time because of DISTRACTIONS.
Not only do you have to think for yourself, but you must also anticipate the reaction/ action, or lack there-of, of the driver(s) behind you. (If you want to stay alive).
ACTIVATING YOUR EMERGENCY FOUR-WAY HAZARD FLASHER LIGHTS as soon as you see an abnormal SLOWING DOWN or STOPPING of traffic on a high speed highway ALERTS the driver(s) following you of a DANGER. Once you see that the vehicles behind you have SAFELY SLOWED DOWN you can turn off your emergency four-way hazard flasher lights.
Since you are SHARING THE ROAD with BIG TRUCKS, you must learn their STOPPING DISTANCES/ TIME. Especially if one is behind you!
Whereas most cars can stop in 3 to 5 seconds, BIG TRUCKS take at least 7 to as much as 15 SECONDS to stop. So if you stop SAFELY in 3 to 5 seconds, but do not warn the BIG TRUCK behind you that you are making a SUDDEN STOP, and GIVE THE BIG TRUCK 7 to 15 SECONDS OF SPACE, that BIG TRUCK will push you and your car forwards for the EXTRA 4 TO 12 SECONDS IT NEEDS TO STOP.
This can have disastrous results for you!
Drive Safe: The THREE (3) second RULE:
(1 min. video)
Tailgating and the 3 second RULE:
(4 min. video)
Pedestrians & Cyclists:
1.5 meters (5ft) minimum SAFETY Buffer Zone for Pedestrians & Cyclists:
Cars need to give Pedestrians & Cyclists a minimum of 1.5 meters SPACE as a SAFETY Buffer Zone. Ideally, when SAFE and possible, give them an Entire Lane: 3 meters (10ft) SPACE.
Trucks should IDEALLY give Pedestrians & Cyclists an Entire Lane, 3 meters (10ft) SPACE, whenever SAFE and possible. But NEVER LESS than 1.5 meters SPACE as a SAFETY Buffer Zone.
3 second RULE: MINIMUM time it takes to STOP a car IF YOU ARE PAYING ATTENTION. This is on DRY ROADS, under ideal conditions. For wet roads, or on snow it may take DOUBLE these times! On ICE it will take even longer! You should not be driving on ICE unless you are equipped with studded snow tires or chains. Stay home. Stay parked. Stay SAFE.
7 second RULE: MINIMUM time it takes to STOP a Big Truck that is empty, on dry roads, under ideal conditions. Cars/ SUVs may also take up to 7 seconds to stop on wet, or snow covered roads.
15 second RULE: A fully loaded Big Truck can take up to 15 seconds to STOP on dry roads, under ideal conditions. For wet roads, or on snow, it may take DOUBLE these times!
*DISTRACTIONS: INCREASE these times. Pay Attention. Do not get distracted while driving.
*Rain & Snow: can DOUBLE these times! (Or more if really slippery/ icy!)
*ICE: on pure ice, especially in FREEZING RAIN you have NO CONTROL ! Stay home. Stay parked. Get off the highway/road until the sand/salt truck passes. This includes SUVs/4 wheel Drives: they don't stop any better on ICE either. They have better ACCELERATION traction under slippery conditions, but exactly the same LACK OF STOPPING traction as everyone else.
In freezing rain wait it out at home, at work, or some other safe location. If on the road, STOP at the closest rest area, coffee shop... get off the road! Stay in a hotel or at friends overnight if must be. Usually the next morning the SUN will be shining, roads will be SAFE, and you will see cars and trucks in every ditch because they had "no time to stop". (Now they need a tow truck, and repairs.)
NO-ZONES & BLIND SPOTS for Big Trucks:
NO-ZONES are BLIND SPOTS for Big Trucks that YOU should avoid being in because the Truck Driver might not see you there. Stay out of NO-ZONES/ BLIND SPOTS when possible.
1) What is the 3 second RULE? 2) What is the 7 second RULE? 3) What is the 15 second RULE? 4) What conditions can DOUBLE these ideal STOPPING TIMES? 5) Where are the BLIND SPOTS and NO-ZONES on a Big Truck? Draw a diagram.
Staying Alive on the Highway, (using the 3, 7, 15 second RULE for Staying Alive on the Highway).
Drive SAFE. Your LIFE depends on it!
Adjust your following distance to TRAFFIC CONDITIONS, WEATHER, Road Conditions and Type & Size of Vehicle you are driving.(Kindly note this excellent video is from "South Australian road rules on safe following distances". They drive on the wrong side of the road!... for North America.)
The law is presently so vague that no one understands it. It must be QUANTIFIED, (be measurable).
The LAW presently states:
YOU MUST BE ABLE TO STOP SAFELY WITHOUT REAR-ENDING THE
CAR/VEHICLE IN FRONT OF YOU IN AN EMERGENCY.
FOLLOWING TOO CLOSELY:
Mathematically this works out to a MINIMUM FOLLOWING DISTANCE of ~3 SECONDS at ANY SPEED, for cars.
Cars: (3 second RULE) ≥3 seconds following distance, (this holds for all legal speeds).
~3 car lengths per 10 mph, (15 ft/s).
~3 car lengths per 16 km/h, (4.4 m/s).
~Length of 1/2 (one half) Football Field, (at ~105 km/h, ~65 mph).
* Using TIME (≥3 secs) calculates increasing following distances for increasing speeds automatically.
* Using TIME also saves converting mph to km/h if going to USA & Canada.
* Time measurements are universal whether using metric or imperial. It saves the need to make conversions.
Big Trucks: (≥3 second RULE) "60m at 60km/h" (speed 17 m/s)
(200 ft at 37 mph) (speed 54 ft/s)
Minimum following distance Big Truck Law in Ontario:
≥3.5 seconds following distance, (this holds for all legal speeds).
~1 Big Truck length per 20 mph.
~1 Big Truck length per 30 km/h.
~4 car lengths per 10 mph, (15 ft/s).
~4 car lengths per 16 km/h, (4.4 m/s).
~8 car lengths per 20 mph. ~8 car lengths per 30 km/h.
~15 car lengths at 100 km/h (62 mph). ~3.5 Big Truck lengths at 100 km/h (62 mph).
☆ Actual SAFE stopping distance for Empty Big Truck: ~7 seconds (7 sec. RULE),
(at ~105 km/h, ~65 mph):
~5 Big Truck Lengths
~24 car lengths
~Length of ONE (1) NFL Football Field!
☆ Actual SAFE stopping distance for Fully Loaded Big Truck: ~15 seconds (15 sec. RULE),
(at ~105 km/h, ~65 mph):
~10 Big Truck lengths
~48 car lengths
~Length of TWO (2) NFL Football Fields!
Evolution of SAFE FOLLOWING DISTANCE "rules of thumb":
1) The first of these was "the car length rule". This was a rule of thumb decreeing that for every ~10 mph of speed the following distance should be ~one (1) car length. At 20 mph two (2) car lengths... and at 60 mph six (6) car lengths.
Alarmingly that works out to a FOLLOWING DISTANCE in TIME of only one (1) second! No wonder so many drivers tailgate! This is what the "old school" taught us!
2) Later this gave way to the more scientific 2-second rule. This meant being two seconds behind the car ahead, and it was applicable at any speed because using TIME automatically calculates increasing following distances required for increasing speeds.
3) We have now evolved to the 3 second RULE for cars because of a better understanding of REACTION TIME. "Drive Safe: The 3 Second Rule That Could Save Your Life": https://youtu.be/jwgmOR8C7ak
4) Since many road users share the road: Pedestrians, Cyclists, Motorcycles, Cars... Big Trucks... EVERYONE needs to know the STOPPING DISTANCES (TIME) and limitations (Blind Spots) of the other in order to PREVENT ACCIDENTS, INJURIES & DEATHS.
The: "3, 7, 15 second RULE for Staying Alive on the Highway"www.3715rule.com provides an easy to remember acronym and website to teach ALL ROAD USERS how to coexist SAFELY & COURTEOUSLY.
The LAW should give us NUMBERS in seconds, feet, meters, Car Lengths, Truck Lengths, and lengths of Football Fields. Making it very CLEAR & EASY TO UNDERSTAND for EVERYONE.
Kids Corner (for adults too):
Road Rage behind the wheel. Why do good people turn into monsters behind the wheel?
Hilarious 1950 Walt Disney Productions cartoon (7 mins) that illustrates how some people develop a Mr Hyde type personality as soon as they get behind the wheel. Very relevant and entertaining cartoon regarding HOW NOT TO DRIVE and ACT behind the wheel.
Clearly illustrates that Road Rage has been developing since at least the 1950s!