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Stopping Distances

When driving, braking lengths are calculated using the driver’s thinking distance, which is the distance the car has travelled before the driver reacts to a threat, and the braking distance, which is the time it takes the car to come to a complete stop once the brakes have been applied.

Stopping Distances

What Affects Stopping Distances

Both the thinking distance and the braking distance have an impact on the overall stopping distance, and both can be altered by a variety of conditions.

These factors have an impact on a car’s stopping distances. The following factors influence a car’s overall stopping distance:

Thinking Distance

Thinking distances are determined by the driver and, aside from the vehicle’s speed, can be increased (making it take longer to react) by:

  • fatigue, alcohol, or a drug (legal or illegal).
  • age – an older driver may suffer from a lack of concentration as well as an increased thinking distance.
  • When using a cell phone while driving, for example, poor vision might reduce reaction time.

Braking Distance

Braking distance is impacted by, and can be increased by, factors other than the vehicle’s speed:

  • the car’s weight, and the brakes’ condition It may take longer for worn discs and/or pads to lessen a car’s speed.
  • the state of the tyres Braking distance can be increased by heavily worn tyres, especially in wet conditions.
  • Braking distance will be longer on wet or slippery conditions.
  • The state of the road. The general state of the road surface and how well it is maintained. The braking distance will be increased by gravel, dirt, and mud.

Stopping Distance Graph

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