Imagine for a moment that kid who just got the driving license. You drive an old car, family heritage, of course, of the last decade. That kid who comes to the university with an eye on the clock, lamenting every traffic light that turns red to his step, because to go out 5 minutes later home means to ask for a truce at the clock, 5 more minutes tucked into bed. That kid that grave L in the tray on the trunk, to prevent the veterans is ensañen with him, and warrants to the agents that the suction cup is peeled off. Imagine for a moment that it starts raining, long enough for the deep holes of the poorly paved asphalt of the parking lots of the university are covered with four fingers of water. And in that moment in the spinning direction and find that your car does not change the path, is maintained in a straight line, and all that you see in front of their noses is the bumper and the massive ball, to the trailer, a car badly parked. Without a doubt, the worst day to understand the importance of those four rings of rubber for your car.
With an ancient sedan economical, without ABS, or the most of the help that we now take for granted has to bring a car. Novel, but still learning to drive. In both geek of cars, watchful of the oil level, careful in the maintenance of the engine, but more concerned with brand new speakers Pioneer, in which to listen to your music, which in the importance of investing in basic elements of its safety, as the tyres. In the end, by that time, you probably think – like most – that the stability controls were not important, that for that nothing better than his ability behind the wheel, and that the ABS was a well-dispensable.
In the background, had the great luck of that little scare took place at low speed. Nothing that a work of sheet metal and paint do not fix. In any case, there is no time, no day, that it is good to learn this important lesson in safety. At least this way. Unfortunately, many drivers do not care about the tendency of your car to lose traction at the exit of a traffic light, that strange when you pass by a puddle, or how to morrea your car when entering a roundabout at speed, a priori, reasonable. The problem is that the time in which you realize that there is a problem because it is usually too late to solve it.
That day he learned that it was not enough to give a little kick in the flank to check that the tyres were in good condition. And not had to wait for a wire sobresaliese of the case to go to the shop to mount a new tire. The difference between a tire in good condition, and the other with a wear greater recommended, or even legal, it can mean to lengthen the braking distance in tens of meters at highway speeds. Can mean the difference between a little scare and an accident of importance.
The arrival of autumn, the cold, the rain, and the snow, make those risks multiply exponentially. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why, in some of the big cities of Spain, the rain arrives accompanied by traffic jams, cars stopped in the hard shoulder, breastplates, reflective, parties friendly in the hands, and unfortunately – some other time – a car of the Civil Guard, distributing the traffic and an ambulance tending to the wounded.
That kid could have been anyone. That kid was me.