When all is well, driving can be enjoyable and even relaxing. The problem is, things don’t always go according to plan. Whether it’s obstacles, other drivers, pedestrians or cyclists, there are always potential risks on the road.
Another form of hazard is vehicle malfunction. Often, we just assume that our vehicle will do what it’s supposed to do, and usually, it does. This makes a vehicle fault all the more shocking when it occurs and it is often difficult to know what to do when something goes wrong.
One of the more scary situations you can find yourself in as a driver is when the brakes fail. This means that your ability to slow down is significantly impaired. Fortunately, there are some ways to manage this scenario, as outlined below.
Your mindset is important
When dealing with brake failure, a natural response might be to panic. Nonetheless, it is important to try and fight this. By remaining calm, you can think rationally about the steps you need to take to keep yourself safe. Avoid any sudden maneuvers and focus on your breathing. Keeping control of your mindset will give you a better chance of retaining full control of the vehicle.
The practical steps
The first thing that you want to do is remove your foot from the gas pedal and start to shift down the gears. This will allow the momentum of your vehicle to decrease and you can gradually come to a stop. Now, you can start thinking about pumping the brake pedal. Braking systems tend to consist of different components, and there is a chance that only one part of your system has failed. While a partial braking system might not stop you fully, it should still assist in bringing you to an eventual halt.
As your speed decreases, you will want to think about exiting the roadway in a safe manner. Carefully pull yourself into the side of the road, away from any danger. From the very beginning of this process, you should turn your hazard lights on to alert other road users that you are in trouble.
As a driver in Massachusetts, your safety is crucial. If you have been caught up in a collision, be aware of your legal rights and protections.