The Need for Speed
Auto racing has been a popular sport for decades. Each year or two it seems that the speeds are constantly increasing. And with the increase in speed comes excitement, drama, and safety concerns. It seems the highlights in auto racing are the incredible wrecks. At speeds that top 200 miles per hour it is no wonder that the wrecks themselves are so spectacular. Of course, the need for speed prompts many innovative technologies. You can look to professional racing for many of the advanced technologies in our cars today. Fuel injection, disc brakes, high-quality tires, many safety features just to name a few. Professional racing pushes everything to the extreme. Extremely high speeds demand the best in quality of products, top performance of drivers, machines, pit crews and track conditions. No margin for error is tolerated.
Of course for us on the everyday roads we travel those extreme speeds do not play a factor. However, we do have our own challenges. Poor road conditions at times such as chuck holes, debris on the road from parts of a retread tire to an old rusty exhaust to litter and so on. In Ohio, we encounter poor visibility, rain, snow, ice, and fog. We also have to be aware of pedestrians and animals. Children do not always know that the street is no place to play. Chasing a ball into the street is all part of their fun. We have to be alert and aware at all times.
Even our vehicles seem to be built with more powerful engines and somehow through technology get reasonably good gas mileage. But, like most people, we enjoy a powerful engine and we need to put it to the test every now and again. These powerful engines are made to run. Power and comfort are built into most of the modern vehicles today. Most of us have to be careful not to exceed the speed limit with all the comfort and power in today's modern vehicles.
Safety Starts with the Driver
Although we can thank professional racing for many of the performance and safety features we enjoy today, we should always be aware that the ultimate safety comes from us. We must be aware of our driving conditions, our driving abilities, and the ability of the vehicle we are driving.
It is a great privilege to be able to jump into our vehicle at will. Go for a drive, get a bite to eat, pick up a friend or haul something. It is an awesome privilege and a greater responsibility.
Here are a few safety tips that can help us all be better drivers;
- Stay focused on driving. Don't let your mind wonder, pay attention to what you are doing.
- Drive defensively. Be aware of your surroundings, people, animals, road conditions, and the weather.
- Plan ahead. Allow plenty of time to get to your destination. Do not be in a hurry.
- Practice safety. Use your turn signals, wear your seat belts, allow ample braking distance.
- Do not get distracted. Texting can wait. If you must text, pull off the road and use your safety flashers. But in most cases, texting can wait until later.