Do you know why it is dangerous to drive with worn shocks? More attention would be given to shock absorbers if drivers were made more aware of the importance of these vehicle components. On the Arrive Alive Road Safety website we have made available a section of content titled “Shock Absorbers and Safety on the Road”.
We approached Gabriel, a market leader in the manufacturing of shock absorbers in an attempt at gaining some experts advice on the relationship between good shock absorbers and safety on the road. Gabriel has been in South Africa for 75 years and is known for quality shock absorbers made for South African conditions!
We would like to quote a section from the Arrive Alive Road Safety Website on the dangers of worn shocks absorbers:
“Shock absorbers are as safety-critical as airbags, brakes and the tread on a car’s tyres. But because the driver cannot see that their shocks are worn, it is a case of out of site out of mind.
In South Africa it is estimated that 50% of cars older than five years on the road have worn shock absorbers, but drivers don’t know this because they gradually adjust their driving to compensate for the extra roll or bounce.
“A worn shock will reduce the driver’s ability to control the vehicle. In an emergency, there could be an accident that otherwise could have been avoided,” says Sean Staley, Gabriel brand manager at Control Instruments.
Staley says the average age of vehicles in South Africa is more than 12 years, and shocks become less effective after about three years.
“Worn shocks wont keep your wheels glued to the road, no matter how new your tyres are.”
“A worn shock absorber will cause the tyre to bounce creating worn or bald spots,” says Staley.
“In an emergency situation, applying brakes can make the tyre to loose contact with the road, increasing the chance of an accident.”
Braking on wet roads, even with good tyres, will cause tyres to bounce and loose grip. The vehicle will skid more easily in the wet. In strong cross winds, there is less control when cornering and the efficiency of anti-lock braking systems (ABS) and the vehicle’s electronic stability control (ESP) capabilities are reduced.
Worn shocks will also cause suspension wear. Excessive spring movement on the vehicle will make the vehicle more difficult to handle.
And during the upcoming festive season, a tired driver is a dangerous driver. Overall, worn shocks will require that the driver concentrate more on keeping the car on the road.”
We would like to urge all vehicle owners to visit the Arrive Alive website and gain a greater understanding of shock absorbers and safe driving. Note the signs of worn shock absorbers and address these dangers without delay!!