Know about the two-second rule

Thursday March 09 2017

When two vehicles collide on the road, it is common to find the two drivers almost exchanging fists and playing the blame game of who caused the accident.

Such scenarios, according to Richard Kalala, a driving instructor with Ddembe Driving School says can be avoided when drivers take time to equip themselves with the two-second rule. The two-second rule he explains, is when a driver remains at least two seconds drive from the vehicle ahead of them when driving or creating a distance of a one car length at whichever speed they are driving.

Where the rule is applied
Kalala says while driving, you must understand that the rule is applicable within the three driving pillars; seeing, deciding and acting safely.

“When you are caught up in traffic jam, you should be able to see whom you are following. This means giving yourself enough following distance to see what happens ahead of you or the reactions of the driver you are following in case they are stopping,” Kalala advises, adding that observing the rule requires fulltime communication with other road users through the rear and front lights and indicators.

The rule, he reiterates, helps in a way that when the motorist ahead makes an abrupt braking, it gives you room to brake before collision.

“When making any decision on the road, the two second rule plays an important role in guiding you to decide your next course of action. When you create a wide gap between your car and the motorist you are following, it gives you time to think before collision occurs,” Kalala reasons. Basir Lukwago, a driving instructor, at B & Sons Driving School says the rule is applicable when in jam and on a highway.


“If you are following a car and it indicates red, you should stop because you do not know what is ahead,” Lukwago advises.

Strategies of not breaking the rule
To avoid breaking the two-second rule, Tibesigwa recommends that it is better for every driver to revisit training school from time to time. “When you go through training school, you are given both practical and theory skills of driving which your friend may not teach you.

Dangers of driving too close
“If you drive so close to a motorist, you are likely to cause rear head collisions by knocking them at the back. The space you may have created between you and them may not have allowed you time to brake to avoid the collision,” Kalala shares.

He adds that,“In traffic jam, driving too close may lead to a self-lock in case the motorist you are following or yourself experience a mechanical breakdown.

Richard Kalala says allowing destructions such as talking on phone while driving is the most common habit among Ugandan drivers that makes them break the rule. Driving through market places that are characterised by noise also contributes to breaking the rule.