Terrifying Ontario dashcam video sparks conversation about distracted driving
It only takes a fraction of a second of distraction for a typical highway drive to turn into a catastrophic crash.
That was almost the case in a recent incident on Highway 407 just north of Toronto, where multiple drivers narrowly averted a collision after an SUV struck a divider and went careening into fast-moving traffic.
In a video shared by the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) the black SUV can be seen in the distance striking a divider on an eastbound 407 exit, possibly in a last-ditch attempt to make a missed exit. The vehicle was spun around by the impact before straying into oncoming traffic.
In just a split second, both the driver of a white sedan and the vehicle dashcam capturing the video swerved away from a situation that could have been much worse.
Great reaction! Things happen fast when driving....this is why your full attention is required at all times. #Dashcam pic.twitter.com/dqJpjXJ75r— OPP Highway Safety Division (@OPP_HSD) March 15, 2022
It's only 20 seconds of video, but it shows how fine the line is between quick reaction and tragedy. However brief, the video has sparked a conversation about distracted driving.
One commenter suggests that this incident would have had a tragic outcome had it not occurred on the tolled 407, which sees much lower traffic volumes than public highways like the 401, saying, "the safety of an empty blind spot is not a luxury enjoyed on most public highways in the GTHA where this most certainly would have been a multi-car pile up."
The drivers in this situation benefitted from having enough space to react, or a safety cushion, an important asset that motorists are less likely to have at their disposal on congested public highways.
This is called situational awareness and making sure that you have a safety cushion around you.— Greg (@gregmarshall59) March 16, 2022
Even with the afforded space to react, many commended the driver's alertness, a clear difference-maker in this very-close call.
Probably a new pair of underpants too— RoyalLolita (@ShopRoyalLolita) March 15, 2022
People often underestimate just how little time one has to react to an accident when moving at highway speeds.
Your marker is the length of your car. Your car traveling at 100 Kph travels 91 feet or 27.7 meter. That is about 5.5 times the length of your car, in 1-second. Even though it does not feel like it, remember your traveling the same speed as the car in front, seconds count.— Arrow206 (@StephenJames58) March 15, 2022
Some are just baffled that the driver of the SUV gambled their life on making that exit, when the alternative was a few extra minutes of driving. Gas is pricey these days, but it isn't bad enough to risk injury or death over saving a buck.
Probably was on the phone texting— goodguy (@stoner416) March 15, 2022
The takeaway here is things can happen fast, and even a moment of distraction could be the difference between life and death.
Ontario Provincial Police
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