TOWING SPEED AND DISTANCE
SCENARIO 1 – EMERGENCY STOP ON A LEVEL STRETCH OF TARRED ROAD
Gently applying brakes intermittently and gearing down carefully must surely be the safest way to bring a towing combination to a halt. It prevents the caravan from jack-knifing. However, when a kudu suddenly appears out of the blue or if that lorry that has just overtaken you loses its load, there’s nothing you can do but hit the brakes.
6s 4,7 s Start braking Start braking
120 km/h If the towing combination is moving along on a straight and level road at 120 km/h and you have to stop unexpectedly, it will take 6 seconds (including the 0,8 second reaction time) to come to a complete halt over a distance of 113 m. This implies that the wheels of the bakkie keep rolling and do not start to skid. If the wheels do lose their grip and skid – which can happen if the bakkie doesn’t have an ABS (anti-lock braking system) – it will take 8 seconds and almost 150 m to stop. 90 km/h 68 m If the bakkie towed at 30 km/h less (at 90 km/h), it would still take the driver 4,7 seconds to stop the combination, bit over a considerably shorter distance of about 68 m. And if the the wheels lose their grip, the driver could stop after 6,2 seconds within 90 m.