A reminder be be ever vigilant when on the highway

Tue Oct 09, 2012 9:18 pm

Paula and I were travelling North on I-81 near Syracuse NY. this evening @ 6:30 PM in the right lane ( rush hour traffic, cloudy day and dusk fast approaching) we are driving @ 60-65 mph. All of a sudden I see two men standing in our lane ,one is on crutches walking vey slowly beside two vans with doors open into our lane of traffic. I am towing an RV approx 7500 lbs, truck approx 6500 lbs. I came in on the brakes turned on the 4 ways looked in my left mirror and see a solid line of traffic in left lane, I have no wiggle room . If I brake too hard and lock up the rig may jack knife, so I did my best control braking , yet stop before wiping out two men. Tractor trailers are braking hard behind us, smoke is streaming past us from their brakes, they are laying down on their horns. I am waiting for the alsmost inevitable collision to the rear of our RV by who knows how many vehicles. By the grace of the All Mighty were able to come to a complete stop approx 5 feet behind the men, we were stopped dead in the right lane of I-81 for approx 20 seconds ( the one on crutches had only one leg) , the two men finally cleared the lane and I eased past, needless to say this was a very scary experience ( to say the least) I think this was the closest call I have ever had while driving ( and I am a bonifide geezer ) and have been driving for a long time. * Note to safety police, yes I know 4 ways are for caution and slow moving vehicles not stopping, however I did what I thought prudent and stand by my decision to deploy 4 way lights, it possibly saved many lives.
Berlin
* edited to correct spelling

Re: A reminder be be ever vigilant when on the highway

Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:14 pm

Bezirk wrote:... yes I know 4 ways are for caution and slow moving vehicles not stopping, however I did what I thought prudent and stand by my decision to deploy 4 way lights, it possibly saved many lives.
Berlin ...

Berlin, I for one will say you did exactly the right thing by hitting the emergency flashers!! This is a practice I first saw while stationed in Germany. All the locals would hit the flashers when presented with congestion and/or a danger area in the highway. It is an immediate attention getter for those around you, especially those coming up fast from behind. I took on the practice and now am in the habit of hitting them here in the States when I see a danger ahead that requires immediate attention.
I've received some strange looks from those that eventually pass me, but, at least I know they noticed and were now safely on their way!! :D

Re: A reminder be be ever vigilant when on the highway

Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:26 pm

:Dito:

Re: A reminder be be ever vigilant when on the highway

Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:01 pm

Berlin:

I agree. Here in Canada whenever there is an obstruction on the road, slow moving vehicles, accident, construction, etc., 4 ways are almost imperative as well as simply being common sense. Warn those behind you that you are slowing down and possibly stopping. We witnessed this practice when I was posted to Germany. Found it occurring in many European countries except France and Itally ... :big give up:

You did exactly right and I do not think there is a police officer anywhere who would penalize anyone for being simply courteous and pro-active.

Re: A reminder be be ever vigilant when on the highway

Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:57 am

My grandfather Mc Court always said that we have more of one end of the horse than the other. From your story it seems as if some of them now drive vans.

Re: A reminder be be ever vigilant when on the highway

Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:26 pm

The problem I see with the safety flashers is that the control is hard to find if you drive different vehicles on a regular basis. Many are behind the steering wheel, so you have to reach around it, some push in, some pull out, some are located in the dash along with other controls and are NOT illuminated, etc. I really miss my telephone company Caravan sometimes. It had a big rocker switch on the dash you could just reach over and slap. Several years ago a string of us were coming back from working during a bad ice storm. We had spent all days going around trees, helping road crews drag trees out, etc, even had one fall so close as I was passing it cleaned the dirt off the side of the van. All of that was in addition to trying to get our customers back in service. . We were heading home about 11pm, there were 2 construction trucks ahead of me, and someone else in an Aerostar following us. We were moving pretty slowly due to icy road, and just as the Aerostar pulled out intending to pass me I saw the lead truck swerve across the highway, so I hit the strobe. The trucks one at a time went over to the other lane to pass a downed tree, and as we got lined out again the Aerostar started around a second time. Guess he was in a hurry. I saw the lead trucks swing over again so I hit the strobe, only this time we had to go clear to the opposite shoulder to get by the tree. After that the guy in the Aerostar decided he would just follow us the rest of the trip.