Arnie Levitan works for Supplier Quality Management, Cluster Electronics, North America, based in Deer Park, Illinois. This is his #SafelyThere story.
A few years back, my family and I took a quick trip to see a Bears game and as we were driving home, a sudden hard rain began. The car in front of us began to drift into another lane – where a semi-truck was also pressing through the weather.
Their light collision triggered a jack knife reaction from the truck’s trailer. Everything seemed to move in slow motion. I began to hit my brakes and, with the assistance of anti-lock braking, I was able to make a smooth stop on the shoulder. The vehicle behind me pulled over as well, unfortunately landing in the ditch to avoid another collision.
After stopping safely, I was able to call 911 and check on the victims of the crash. We helped to direct traffic until the emergency responders arrived and took over. I am overwhelmingly grateful for my anti-lock braking system and proud that the company I work for helped to develop this technology.
According to NHTSA, in 2017 there were 4,761 people killed in crashes involving large trucks – a 9% increase from 2016. In fair conditions, fully loaded trucks can take over 500 feet to come to a complete stop. This experience enforced the importance of keeping a safe following distance when behind trucks, especially in bad weather. And, when the unexpected happens, I’m grateful for the vehicle technologies that keep me – and those around me – safe on the road.