Three Factors That Affects Your Total Stopping Distance

It is a typical belief that a vehicle’s braking system is what enables you to stop suddenly to avoid a collision. However, the truth is that there are several factors involved to come to a complete stop swiftly and safely to avoid injury. Let’s recall what is stopping distance and what factors contribute to the stopping distance.

What is the Total Stopping Distance?

The total stopping distance is the summation of the reaction distance, braking distance and perception distance. When you perceive a need to slow or stop the vehicle, a few seconds of time will pass. The distance travelled during this period is called perception time. The time taken to react and come into the braking position is called reaction distance. The distance covered in coming to a complete stopping position is called braking distance.

Factors Affecting Your Stopping Distance:

Road Condition:

When the road conditions are icy, wet or covered in snow, they are naturally slippery. The friction between the road and your car tyres will affect the probability of skidding. When you travel on roads in such types of conditions, it is important to maintain a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.


Tyre treads are intended for dispersing water on the road. If your tyre has low treads, your vehicle is at the risk of hydroplaning. Due to this, your tyres lose their grip, and you would not be able to stop the vehicle suddenly in an emergency.


The speed you are driving at can affect your stopping distance to a great extent. The faster you travel, the more your stopping distance is. So, it is highly recommended to drive at less speed so that you won’t be at the risk of getting into an accident.

If you would like to learn the most effective stopping techniques to avoid mishaps, why not take a few hours of driving lessons from Sprint Driving School? As a leading provider of driving courses in Melbourne and with a team of experienced driving instructors, we can teach you defensive driving techniques that can help you stay safe on the road. To know about our driving lesson prices, feel free to call 1300 731 330.