Lesson Learned by Driver Riding My Bumper on Maine’s Route 302
I'll be the first to admit that a lot of people on the road don't like how I drive. Judging by how close they get to my bumper and how often I get passed, I guess I make them angry because I don't drive over the speed limit. Once in a while I even get headlights flashed at me because I'm not going fast enough for them. What happened this morning though, is exactly why I drive the speed limit.
Let me start by saying that driving the speed limit has given me a spotless driving record over the 35 years that I've been driving which has resulted in lower insurance premiums which is a big help. But another benefit to driving the speed limit had been a longer reaction time to hazards in the road.
I was driving into work on Route 302 in Windham and had another one of those impatient drivers on my bumper. They were far too close to me than they should have been and found that out pretty quickly when I had to hit the brakes.
A dog had suddenly stepped out into the road in front of me and I had to hit the brakes and swerve to the left. Luckily I was going the speed limit so had enough time to react to prevent hitting the dog. It quickly turned around and walked back off the road.
The driver behind me had to slam on their brakes too and almost ended up in my bumper because they weren't a safe distance from me. According to an article from CNBC, you should be no closer than one car's length for every 10 miles per hour of speed you are traveling. So if you're traveling at 40 miles per hour, the speed limit on the section of road I was on, you should be four car lengths behind the car ahead of you. Luckily there was no accident involving the other car or the dog.
Now I know there will be haters who think I'm overreacting. You're welcome to that opinion, but I'm still going to keep driving the speed limit. If that was your dog that jumped out in front of me, you'd thank me.