Glad to be alive - Richard Hall
There I was, doing 70 mph on the A12 in the dark, in the outside lane passing a long line of slower moving vehicles. Suddenly, about 50 yards in front, a massive great artic ambles out of a side turning and straight into the inside lane. Mass panic behind it - drivers brake hard, a Peugeot 309 locks up all four wheels and slides sideways into the outer lane straight in front of me.

Many thanks to Yokohama (tyres), German & Swedish (good quality brake disks and pads) and Bosch (anti-lock brakes that still work at 10 years old). My hands are still trembling....
Re: Glad to be alive - Tomo
If you'd been creeping just a little less slowly it would all have happened behind you!
Re: Glad to be alive - Tom Shaw
Richard,

Sometimes we all have an experience which brings home to us how vulnerable we can be to the sudden and unexpected event on the road. Mine last weekend was entirely my own fault. Out on the bike, and "Making progress" I was overtaking a couple of cars on the A40, when "Out of nowhere" (ie crap observation and planning on my part) was an oncoming car. If he reads this, sorry and thanks for braking in time.

My pants went in the bin when I got home, and I have spent most of the week re-reading Roadcraft.
Re: Glad to be alive - ladas are cool
i tell you this, i am glad i converted my ladas rear brakes to discs, as it did have a stopping distance of - never.
Re: Glad to be alive - Peter M
Last Wendnesday evening, driving East on the M4 near the Leigh Delamere service, I was about 50 yards behing a large artic. in the middle lane when one of its rear tyres exploded-actually saw a spherical shock wave in the spray.
I jumped(it went off like a bomb) but the BMW it was overtaking swerved, almost going into the rails, then pulled up on the hard shoulder (to have a heart attack, probably..) lorry pulled over without drama.
We're all at the mercy of Lady Luck when driving -anticipate all you like, its the unexpected that'll get you!
A Red Arrows pilot, replying to a question about the dangers of formation flying, said he felt safer than when he was driving to work- he knew all his fellow pilots, and practiced the stunts for months, and when you're on a single lane road, you can be approaching an oncoming car with a three foot clearance at a combined closing speed of 180+, and you don't know anything about the driver..!
Re: Glad to be alive - Andrew Tarr
Peter - if you genuinely put yourself into a closing speed of 180+ on a single-lane road, you deserve anything you get. And I suppose the other guy does too.
Re: Glad to be alive - Tomo
Andrew, we often have to go to single track roads because that is where the enemy is not.
Re: Glad to be alive - Peter M.
Andrew-
Just revisited this thread, saw your answer. I agree - could I state that I was repeating the quote of the Red Arrows pilot, not my own experiences!
However, I could be doing 40 and the other bloke 140!
P.
Re: Glad to be alive - Alastair
My sister in law just out of hospital having just been in head on at 50mph after one of her tyres blew. 2 hours to get her out of car (thought it would be minus 1 leg - fortunately not) helicopter etc. etc. Even at this speed (combined 100mph) the front wheel was 6 inches from passenger seat, clutch pedal 6 inches from gearstick. 2 year old subaru (yes that one!) with airbags. If no airbags it would certainly be a more sombre tale.

We all regularly see people doing stupid things on the roads. This is what happens when you are law abiding in a good car!

She is still seriously shocked by the incident and has trouble sleeping 1 month later. Won't walk for 6 months. However, she certainly is glad to be alive.

MORAL - Don't hit a 4x4- as well as impact damage, they go over you.
Re: Glad to be alive - honest john
Today as I was on the way to the auction at Blackbushe a white Transit came round a corner off a roundabout towards me and briefly lost the back. Good driver, though. He caught it before the back has moved more than about a foot. If he hadn't caught it I'd have found out what it's like to sit behind an inflating airbag (if I was lucky).

HJ
Re: Glad to be alive - ladas are cool
about 3.30 pm today, i was at a roundabout, the car that was going around the roundabout was signalling left, so i went, but the idiot didnt go left, he went all the way around the roundabout, so he and i nearly crashed. i just wish people would signal correctly.
Re: Glad to be alive - communibus
Not a "good driver" at all unless there was oil or something on the road. Total lack of experience and anticipation OR bald or underinflated tyres.

Just happy it ended well for you
Re: Glad to be alive - bob
not a good transit driver hj- a bad one. should not have lost control in the first place
Re: Glad to be alive - KB
Alastair, I'm pleased that your sister in law lived to tell the story and good wishes to her for a speedy recovery. Fortunate for her that she wasn't driving something less substantial. (What was the 4x4 that she hit - what happened to the occupants of that?)
Re: Glad to be alive - Alastair
A Diahatsu 4 trak I believe. The occupants were bruised and shaken, but let out after a night in hospital.
Re: Glad to be alive - Brian
A few months ago I was on the bike, pulled out to overtake a line of four cars. As I got up to the rear car it too pulled out to overtake the other three, having forgotten to check his mirror. The speeds were not particularly fast, I was doing about 50, the queue of cars about 40, on a 60 mph limit road.
I hit the rear offside/bumper of the car that pulled out, wobbled but stayed on. The car just carried on with its overtaking manoevre, minus a bit of bumper.
I had a bruised shin and a broken plug cap.
The margin between survival and disaster can be paper-thin. If I had been half an inch to the left my front wheel would have his his back and I would have been over the handlebars, with goodness known what consequences.
Lack of observation and not signalling intentions are a major cause of accidents, probably THE major causes.
My instructor nearly 40 years ago said "Look, Signal, Manoevre". It is still valid today.
 

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