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Jaila's Mommy
How many feet should I leave between my car and the car in front of me when we are stopped at a light or sign ?

Additional Details
measurements if possible
ex 10ft 15ft 20ft...

thank you for all your answers



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valicevorpal
About a foot to a foot and a half, that way if someone hits you from behind you have room to jerk forward before you hit the person in front of you. Remember, if you hit someone from behind regardless of what they were doing, you are at fault.

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Evil
Rating
a foot and a half

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JIM
In my short driving career of 5 and a half years I have encountered ram ins 8 times. I don't mind when my aincient (I sold it off, now using a not so old ford laser) MB 200E and if the guy behind me is something not so good. But the guy infront, once, I hit a Porsche. nearly took it to a lawsuit althought, honestly, it was just a cracked taillight and some scabs of paint. So, leave about 2 feet. That's my advice. I leave approx. 20 cm.

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Scott D
Here's the rule of thumb (this was also displayed in Missouri's Drivers Test Manual):
When you are in the vehicle and you look in the rear view mirror and you cannot see the headlights of the vehicle behind you, that vehicle is too close. Theoretically, that's about a half to a full car length behind. So, for you, think about it that way. Do you think the car in front of you can see your headlights in his/her rear view mirror?

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Aerostar
Miss Mav was the closest. The accepted standard is a distance that allows you to see the wheels of the vehicle ahead of you contacting the pavement.
That rule works for any vehicle except a commercial truck. In that case, at least half a car length (and make sure you stop where you can see the truck's side mirror.)

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smartblond48
Rating
One car length is the accepted standard.

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Jayson
Rating
10ft

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terrified by spiders
Rating
I leave half a car. Don't get too close. If you get hit from behind, you can be pushed into the car ahead. Then you've got damage on both ends of your car.

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Doubtful 360
Rating
About 15 ft

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blackcobra487
Rating
The only thing wrong with Scott D's logic is that doesn't apply to being behind an SUV. You'd need to be a good 20-30 feet away from an SUV if you're in a small car for the driver to see your headlights. I'd go for the tire "rule of thumb" that was suggested. Make sure you can see the tires of the car in front of you.

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netnoct23
I can't believe some of these answers .. a car length ? 10 ft ? crikey... that's gonna be one hell of a queue for the lights.

Anyway. Depends on the road your on. If it's flat then hardly anything just make sure you leave a foot or so to give time to react if the brakes fail. However on a hill maybe hold back a bit more.

In any circumstances I'd say no more than half to three quarters of the length of the vehicle in front is appropriate.

Imagine at a busy junction if everyone left 1 cars length, it would hold up traffic really bad, especially if there were lights.

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bungee
whats it matter are you going to get out and measure. stop as close as you feel comfortable with but not more than 1/2 car length.

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N8
Rating
Well if i can remember drivers education from many years ago, i believe they always told us leave enough room to where you can see the rear tires of the car in front of you when stopped.

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Ms.M
As a rule, you should be able to see the rear tires of the car in front of you. You can use measurements, but there are reasons not to leave a whole car-space. Some cars will attempt to squeeze in. I am a retired driving instructor.
Also don't wait until the last minute to stop. If the passenger feels like screaming or pressing on the imaginary breaks, the driver is moving too fast.

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