How to stop a car in 8 seconds if the brake fails [Video]

When you drive a car, your worst possible fear would be the break failing. It truly is the worst outcome and could lead to a degree of major or minor injuries to the occupants of the car. Moreover, brake failure causes serious damage to your car, therefore taking care of your brakes should be of top priority for any vehicle owner. The situation goes for a toss when the driver doesn’t know how to tackle the situation in case of a brake failure.

The underlying causes for such a mishap could include your brake wire snapping to your master cylinder leaking which would cause the car to lose all the pressure it requires to apply the brakes and bring the car to a complete halt. Today, there are a lot of tips and ways to prevent such a thing from happening, it’s extremely important that every driver should go through them to safeguard themselves. We found the perfect video for you to watch and understand how you can save yourself with the least amount of inconvenience and damage.

The video was posted on a channel called the Knowledge Kingdom on Youtube. The share of manual transmission cars in India is still much more than automatic transmission cars. The first step that the driver needs to take, in case the brake fails is to remain calm and remove their foot from the accelerator pedal. Once your foot is off the accelerator, pull the handbrake only halfway up. Do not pull the hand brake all through as it can be fatal. Pulling complete power from the handbrake at a higher speed causes locking of the rear wheels and as a result, you’ll lose control over your car.

How to stop a car in 8 seconds if the brake fails [Video]

Once you’re done with pulling the hand brake halfway up, start shifting the gear levers, very slowly one by one. Do not miss out on any of the gears while doing this step. For example, do not skip the 5th gear to the 3rd gear without hitting the 4th gear. This particular step would lead your car to think, you’re engine braking and it will gradually come to lower speed and thereafter help you to bring the car to a complete halt with the help of the handbrake.

Not enough space ahead can still be a problem

This method of bringing your car to the halt in case of brake failure is one of your best bets. Statistics prove that using this method your car could come to a halt from 60 km/h in about 8 seconds. Obviously, the law of motion applies here and the time to stop the car would be directly proportional to the speed of the car. The problem becomes bigger only when the driver doesn’t have enough space to stop the car ahead of it. In that case, the driver has to manoeuvre the car through other vehicles, obstructions, drive it to the shoulder, hit the side rails or the bushes to bring it to a complete stop. This should only be used as a last resort.

We hope this article helps you to be cautious, however the best way to prevent this from happening is to take care of your car. Get your engines and brakes checked regularly, especially when you intend on driving the car regularly or on long routes. In India, most of the accidents happen through either tyre bursts or brake fails and it’s our responsibility to safeguard ourselves and other occupants of your car.

Shantonil Nag

Shantonil brings a refined blend of expertise and enthusiasm to motoring journalism at With a career spanning over 11 years, he anchors Cartoq's insightful car reviews and test drives. His journalistic journey began as a correspondent at, where he honed his skills in content writing and scripting car reviews. Later, as Senior Editor for, his expanded role included curating and structuring web content. At, his expanded role includes assisting the video team to create high-quality car reviews. (Full bio)