Traffic cops related question - moonshine

After watching traffic cops the other night where the young girl was killed got me thinking about if there was anything she could have done to improve her situation. At the end of the day regardless of who was at fault and why, the young girl still lost her life.

This not a discussion about the rights and wrongs of it, there's another thread for that. This is also by no means suggesting that the girl was at fault. I'm interested I what we as individuals can to do to improve our safety. I'm sure many of us have been in that situation where the traffic suddenly goes from 70mph to 0mph and you hear the screech of the tyres from the car behind. I believe this is a very common situation and there have probably been many close calls over the years.

So would any of the following possibly saved her life:

1 - If she had left a bigger gap between her and the car in front, would this have reduced the severity of the impact at all by allowing her to move further forward?

2 - Similar to number one, if the brakes (foot and hand brake) were off, would the car have moved forward more reducing the impact?

3 - If she had read the road ahead and started to brake very early would the lorry driver have maybe noticed the stopping traffic and braked?

4 - If she was aware of the potential risk of being hit from behind could she have watch the traffic behind in her rear view mirror giving enough warning to allow her time pull onto the hard shoulder?

5 - Would she have survived if she had been in a larger car?

6 - Many drivers in this situation put their hazard lights on to warn traffic behind that they are braking hard. Would this have helped?

I know it's lots of 'ifs' and 'maybes' but there could be some good safety tips to be learnt here.
Traffic cops related question - turbo11
Out of respect i do not think the thread should be commented on.
Traffic cops related question - Hamsafar
I think you should post such things about the situation in general, but not an actual event, and I didn't see the programme, but having seen a lorry hit a stationary line of traffic at about 50mph, I's say there's pretty much nothing anyone in the queue can do, it looks like a brick being dropped on a snail.
Traffic cops related question - Statistical outlier
I disagree. I believe that it is disrespectful not to try and learn from accidents. The girl's parents apparently agree, having allowed it to be shown on TV.

The critical things have already been mentioned. Leave a gap in front to give you an option, watch your mirrors, indicate with hazard lights as appropriate, look well ahead. Doing all these when I was 18 saved me, my mother and grandmother from being rear-ended by a 7.5 tonne truck on the M25. An experience that I am very grateful to have avoided.
Traffic cops related question - Altea Ego
There is an established safety action for this eventuality. Its called an exit route or safety zone

Simply put, where ever you are, driving or stationary always have an exit route.

When stationary, you leave sufficient space to pull round the car in front of you. YOu check youhave an escape route (in her case the hard shoulder) and you keep an eye on your mirror. You may not get out of the way of the lorry in time but you may have had time to get your car pointing into your empty exit zone.

On motorways when moving, always have a space to left or right to move into. dont get boxed in.
TourVanMan TM < Ex RF >
Traffic cops related question - Chris M
All you can do is keep as many options open as possible.

The first is to leave a good distance in front of you. It worked for me yesterday on the M27. Doing about 60mph in fairly heavy traffic when the cars in front stopped quickly (due to bunching). I braked harder than I really needed to so as to still allow a few car lengths gap. Looked in mirror to see car behind pulling to a halt about a car length away. Unfortunately, the car behind him wasn't so on the ball/too close/whatever went into the back of him. I saw it happen and was able to pull forward a little and therefore avoid the car behind being pushed into me.

I always leave a good gap when I'm the last car on a slip road, then reduce the gap once there are a few other cars behind me.

Traffic cops related question - Lud
I always leave a good gap when I'm the last car
on a slip road, then reduce the gap once there are
a few other cars behind me.

If I understand you correctly Chris M you are boasting about having caused an accident by braking unnecessarily heavily and then smugly driving away.

If I had done something as gratuitously half-witted as that I wouldn't be boasting about it. However perhaps I misunderstood your post.
Traffic cops related question - Westpig
it would be the hazard lights for me.......... the brake lights can mean slowing down a little bit, slowing down a lot, severe braking or stopped.
Traffic cops related question - PhilDews
In my view, giving Chris' explanation it is surely the fault of the person who drove into the back of the car - I too take my speed down as quick as possible when leaving a motorway as I'm generally driving a 2.2tonne 4x4 which can take longer to stop. I'm not saying its an emergency stop - which is of course not the right course of action (unless its an emergency!).

A more general comment - the wreckage of the 206 was horrendous - its back wheels were embedded under the front of the lorry. It certainly reaffirms my commitment to buying larger cars...
Drive Your Way - If anything can, TerraCan
Traffic cops related question - martint123
I do as Chris suggested if approaching stationary traffic. Brake, leaving enough space in front to change lanes. Hazards or pump brake pedal. Look, no stare, into the mirror and be prepared to take avoiding action.
Something has to be done about congestion at junctions causing stationary traffic on just one lane of a motorway. When I used to do 50k miles a year, I sometimes chose to drive past rather than sit as "tail end charlie" in a queue like that.

Traffic cops related question - Westpig
same with a queue around a bend on an A sit there nervously looking at the mirror.... wondering.

I've always presumed if you're 'tail end charlie' you should be as close to the car in front that you reasonably can be, then you'll lessen the secondary impact ....i.e. you into idea whether that's sound or not

hopefully someone a damned site more technically minded than me might be able to explain on here
Traffic cops related question - madf
"I've always presumed if you're 'tail end charlie' you should be as close to the car in front that you reasonably can be, then you'll lessen the secondary impact ...."

It's all a matter of decelleration imo. If the car in front of you has their brakes on.. or is close to the car in front of them which has its brakes on.. and you are close.. then it is likely your car will be crushed as you will act as the buffer as the vehicle hitting you slows down by losing its energy into your car bodyshell. (which is largely immobile due to the vehicle in front.)

If on the other hand you leave a 5 metre gap, you will be shunted forward 5 metres before you hit the vehicle in front. If you have your brakes on, you will absorb some of the energy braking on behalf of the vehicle hitting you and some of the energy will be absorbed by your brakes.

If you are in the queue with no brakes on , your fate will be determined by the vehicle in front, gap or no gap. SO that is the worst scenario imo..

So my personal aim would be brakes on (footbrake to show brake lights!) and a gap before vehicle in front.. and hope they have not got their brakes on!

Perhaps someone else can correct me if wrong (likely!)

Traffic cops related question - David Horn
I also tend to do my heaviest braking early in the slip road - would rather discover a brake failure with time to do something about it than 50 feet from a busy roundabout etc. If someone's too close that's their problem.
Traffic cops related question - Chris M
Lud, I suggest you have misunderstood my post. The car behind me had no trouble stopping. I also hung around long enough to give him my business card in case he needed a witness.

I also suggest you read the sticky 'Acceptable Forum Behaviour'.
Traffic cops related question - Lud
Of course I've read the sticky Chris M. Of course I've been feeling a bit guilty about my rather rude post. And remembering an occasion when I stopped quite gently at the lights in Marylebone road, and the car behind me stopped quite gently, and then an absolute pink fluffy dice of a fellow hurtled up and shunted the car behind into me. They were both leaking blood, oil and water all over the road and undriveable, I was driveable with damage worth more than both the other cars put together....

The fool responsible for all this damage shouted: 'I vos blinded by a reflection! I vos blinded by a reflection!'

Unfortunately I am not given to deadly physical violence at such moments, and nor was anyone else. One of the great regrets of my life.

So, sorry. But I did say I might have misunderstood yr post.
Traffic cops related question - Chris M
Lud, apology accepted.

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