TECH ED’S CHOICE

Car (South Africa) - - TECH -

DIS­AP­PEAR­ING HEAD­LIGHTS?

I won­der if any­one has had an ex­pe­ri­ence sim­i­lar to mine where my car’s head­lamps “dis­ap­peared”? Last year, I was in­volved in a se­ri­ous mo­tor ac­ci­dent on the R25 out­side Bronkhorstspruit. It was dark and I was trav­el­ling at ap­prox­i­mately 105 km/h (120 km/h zone) when my head­lamps went black. Af­ter two sec­onds of con­fu­sion, there was a sud­den re­al­i­sa­tion that a coal truck and trailer were stopped right across the road a short dis­tance in front of my car. Although I slammed on the brakes, I was un­able to halt in time and col­lided into the trailer’s tyres.

A sim­i­lar ex­pe­ri­ence be­fell me in 1994 when I was driv­ing my Kombi at about 30 km/h in Kariba vil­lage and the head­lamps also dis­ap­peared. Again, the same sit­u­a­tion, but this time an ele­phant was in the road. And again, I ap­plied the brakes and stopped two me­tres from the an­i­mal. Is it pos­si­ble for the ele­phant’s hide to have “ab­sorbed” the light from the head­lamps in the same way that the truck’s tyres did? JAC VAN NIEK­ERK Via email

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