The emergency stop manoeuvre can be one of the hardest to pull off if you’re unsure of exactly how to do it.
Emergencies do happen and you must be able to stop safely, quickly and in a controlled manner to prevent the car from skidding across the road when performing the manoeuvre. Quick reaction time is vital!
Completing the emergency stop manoeuvre
You may be asked to perform the emergency stop manoeuvre during your practical driving test, so let’s go through the exact process.
Here’s our step by step guide which you might find useful:
- There won’t be time to check your mirrors when you are performing an emergency stop. You will have to keep a lookout and keep checking what is behind you.
- Do not signal, keep both hands on the steering wheel at all times to maintain maximum control. Your seatbelt should keep you in the right place and having both hands on the wheel will help to brace the impact.
- Squeeze the brake firmly and fully to stop the vehicle as quickly and safely as possible. At the same time, you should also use the clutch pedal to stop the engine from stalling or from cutting out entirely.
- Once you have come to a complete stop and there is no more danger around, apply the handbrake and move the gearstick back into neutral. In a driving test environment, your examiner will tell you when you can move off again.
- If you have stopped in the middle of the street, before you set off, make sure you take a good look around your surroundings and check both of your blind spots. Remember to look out for cyclists or other drivers going past.
The manoeuvre and ABS brakes
ABS brakes or an anti-locking braking system will help to stop the wheels from locking and causing the car to skid. Most new cars come with ABS brakes installed as standard, but some older cars might have a slightly different braking method called Cadence Braking. This system would require you to pump the brake instead to stop the wheels from locking up.
ABS is a computerised sensor system that will detect when the brakes are starting to lock up and it will release the brakes just for a second, before reapplying them several more times, until the vehicle has come to a complete stop. The system only activates in these emergency braking situations and can’t be used to shorten stopping distances.
Hopefully, this step by step guide has helped you understand how to correctly perform the emergency stop manoeuvre.
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