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Emergency braking

There are times when something
unexpected occurs that requires you to
brake suddenly. The key to emergency
braking is to stop the vehicle as quickly
as possible without losing control of your
vehicle.

If your vehicle has ABS brakes

Most vehicles are equipped with an
antilock braking system (ABS). The
ABS allows you to steer while the brakes
are being applied. ABS applies brake
pressure at each wheel, cycling from
locked to slightly rolling. You will feel this
as a vibration through the brake pedal.
With ABS you can brake as hard as you
need without losing your ability to steer.

To brake in an emergency, follow
these steps:
• Apply steady firm pressure to the
   brake pedal.
Do not pump or release the
   brake pedal.
• Look and steer in the direction you
   want to go.
• Be sure to check your vehicle’s
   owner’s manual for more information
   on emergency braking techniques.

If your vehicle does
not have ABS brakes

In vehicles without ABS, braking hard
can cause the wheels to stop rolling. The
wheels are ‘locked’ when the brakes are
applied and they stop rolling. This can
cause you to lose steering control. If your
wheels lock, ease off the brake pedal.

Brake again but not as hard.

To brake in an emergency, follow
these steps:
• Press firmly on the brake pedal to the
   point just before the wheels lock. This is
   called threshold braking.
• If the wheels lock, release the brake
   pedal slightly to regain steering control.
• Press the brake pedal firmly again
   without locking the wheels.
• Look and steer in the direction you want
   the front of the vehicle to go.

Loss of control

The road surface, the speed of your
vehicle, turning, and the condition of your
tires can contribute to a skid. Skidding
means you have lost control of the vehicle.
To regain control, do not touch the brake
or the accelerator, and look and steer
where you want the front of the vehicle to
go.

Most skids are the result of driver error.
A skid can occur when you:
• drive too quickly on poor road
   conditions like ice, snow, rain, mud,
   sand or gravel
• turn the steering wheel too sharply
• turn the steering wheel too much for the
   speed you are travelling
• brake too firmly
• accelerate too quickly

Skid recovery

Drive in a manner that reduces the
possibility of having your vehicle skid.
Plan ahead so you will not have to
suddenly brake or steer. Driving in a
 

76  A Driver's Guide to Operation, Safety and Licensing

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