Here is a video of a truck driver whose brakes failed so he used the reverse gear to drive the truck for 3 kilometres before bringing it to a halt. The incident happened on Jalna – Sillod road of Maharashtra and the video has been uploaded by Transport Live on their YouTube channel. The driver could not use the first or second gear because the truck needs to be stationary to engage in those gear. So, he slowly drove the truck in reverse gear until he found a safe way to stop it. There are a number of bikers that we can see in the video. Some of them helped in clearing out the oncoming traffic by warning them about the situation.
Finally, after rolling for quite some time, the truck had covered 3 kilometres in reverse. That does not seem like that big of a difference, but when we consider that the driver was driving it, there were no brakes and he had to protect the oncoming traffic also, it seems like a tough job. And then there is the momentum, big trucks carry a lot of momentum so it is very difficult to stop them. Also, larger tyres roll very easily as compared to smaller ones. Due to which the speed of the truck was not decreasing. Finally, when the driver saw an open farm he turned the steering wheel towards it. The rough surface of the farm helped in slowing down the truck and finally, it came to a stop.
Brake failure is one of the most dangerous situations that a person can get into while driving. However, if you are driving a car there are some ways through which you can come to a stop. If you are in a slow speed situation such as bumper to bumper traffic then you can pump the brakes rapidly which might work. Then downshift to first gear, which will help in slowing down the gear through aggressive engine braking.
Remember, not to touch the accelerator as that will increase the engine revs and we are trying to reduce them. Gently, pull up the handbrake which will help in slowing down your rear wheels. You can also gently brush your tyres with the curb which will increase friction, slow down your speed and finally the car will stop.
If you are going fast such as on a highway, then you should start down-shifting the gears which will increase the revs and help in slowing down the vehicle. Then, once you have shed most of your speed, use your handbrake gently to slow down the speed even further. Remember not to use the handbrake when you are going fast because that will lock up the rear wheels and the vehicle will start skidding and get out of control. Once the car has slowed down enough, switch off the ignition with the clutch not engaged and the car is still in gear as engine dragging will help in slowing down the car. These are some of the ways that you can try. If you want to read more about these ways you can click here.