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Improving your braking: safe stopping distances

Driving tips and other life stuff

Improving your braking: safe stopping distances

If you're reading this post you're probably looking for some help with your braking driving feedback. That - or your online shopping has taken a complete change of direction.

Improving harsh braking is usually a combination of two main driving skills: distance and observation. So if you're finding you're hitting the brakes far too often, focusing on both these things will get your driving score moving nicely towards 100.

Give yourself space

When people don't have their own space, problems start. And the same applies to the road.

If you're driving too close to the car in front because you're 100% sure they're going to go through those traffic lights, but they stop - you're going to be forced to hit the brakes too. And let's just hope you managed to in time.

It's all about spotting danger and reacting early. Take yourself back to your early driving lesson days. You'd always keep well back from other drivers so you could prepare for upcoming situations on the road. Why? Well, because the more space you had the easier it was to correct any mistakes you made.

Always remember your stopping distances and think to yourself, if that driver or kid on a scooter, Jack Russell or cyclist was to do something unexpected, would I be able to stop safely in time? If no, get well back my friend.

We find that a lot of new drivers have a tendency to fixate on the road ahead and often don't look at their bigger surroundings or other drivers. This is all about improving your Peripheral Awareness: seeing potential hazards before they enter the central vision.

ingenie's Driving Feedback Team

Observation and planning

Sounds like a simple one - of course you're looking at the road? But are you actually SEEING what's happening around you. It's one thing to glance at a car pulling out at a roundabout, but to allow your brain time to process the speed of the other driver and decide whether you should be planning to stop is the skill part.

Safe braking is all about reaction. We're human, and humans make errors. Humans are busy and have 10,000 things on their mind at once. So don't put yourself in a situation where you're relying purely on your reaction times to avoid a crash.

Be vigilant, and give yourself time and space to prepare for the unpredictable. It's as simple as that.

Not in a rush? Stick with us because we've got loads more braking advice coming up from ingenie's Driver Training.


Katey Joined ingenie in 2014 and is in charge of all things social and content. She passed her driving test in 2015 and her first car is a Toyota Yaris T3 named Tyrone.