An earlier post about making Mustangs safer with 3 point seatbelts reminded me of a theory that I have about cars and safety:
While I am certainly in favor of the safety items that have been developed in cars over the years, I think that they also have a downside to them - namely, that people will drive at a level that corresponds to how safe they feel in an automobile. If that makes no sense, read on:
Let's use 4 wheel drum brakes vs. modern disc, anti-locks. As a driver of my Mustang every day, I have never had a problem with the drum brakes, including wet weather, and I live in the mountains. However, I drive at a level that respects the limitations of the braking system my car has. I don't ride other people's bumpers and then expect my car to stop on a dime when the person in front of me is slamming on their brakes. By the same token, I witness people every single day coming up to obvious stopping situations (traffic, stop signs, lites, etc) and doing 55mph until they're 50 feet from the stopping point and then applying the brakes hard and stopping short.
I can think of other examples. When I used to have my 4wd truck, in wintery weather while I would be driving in 4wd (TRUE 4wd rather than AWD) people in these AWD Suv's would be flying by me on the highway, I'm sure all the while thinking their AWD was going to neutralize any ice that may be on the bridges, etc. I never saw anyone pass me in an old rear wheel drive Mustang, however.
I'll finish this up by saying that I suspect that, as more 'safety' devices are invented, people are forgetting more of the common sense that it takes to drive a car successfully (not injuring you, someone else, or the cars). Maybe everyone should have to drive 60's or earlier cars for a couple of years before they're allowed to drive modern cars so that they could learn some good driving skills.
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