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Stopping distances

Stopping distance is affected by a number of factors, including weather conditions, load, condition of the road surface, tyres, brakes, driver skill and design and type of vehicle.

If you find it hard judging the correct distance between you and the car in front, use the 2 second rule.

The information on approximate stopping distances presented on this page is for general guidance only.

As the car in front passes a marker say "only a fool breaks the 2 second rule" this should take 2 seconds and you should have finished saying it before you pass the same marker. In bad weather you will need to double this distance to 4 seconds or even more.

In icy/wintery road conditions the 2 second rule increases ten-fold.

Remember: You need to take into account both the time it takes you to react to a situation (the thinking time) and the time it takes to bring your car to a halt (the braking distance). These distances assume the driving conditions are clear and the road is dry.

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stopping distance sign - 20 mph 32 20 feet. (6m) 20 feet. (6m) 40 feet. (12m)
stopping distance sign - 30 mph 48 30 feet. (9m) 45 feet. (14m) 75 feet. (23m)
stopping distance sign - 40 mph 64 40 feet. (12m) 80 feet. (24m) 120 feet. (36m)
stopping distance sign - 50 mph 80 50 feet. (15m) 125 feet. (38m) 175 feet. (53m)
stopping distance sign - 60 mph 96 60 feet. (18m) 180 feet. (55m) 240 feet. (73m)
stopping distance sign - 80 mph 112 70 feet. (21m) 245 feet. (75m)
  315 feet. (96m) layout graphic - rounded corner

Related useful links : The Highway Code

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