Watch out for old men in pickup trucks this winter
While it may be open to debate whether men or women are generally safer drivers, men over age 45 are much more likely to crash their vehicles on icy and snowy roads, according to a new study.
Those risks, notable as winter approaches, are even greater if the older men are driving four-wheel-drive pickup trucks, Purdue University researcher Fred Mannering found. It could reflect a false sense of safety, he said.
“There may be a sense of invulnerability with four-wheel drive trucks leading the drivers to not slow down as much as they should,” Mannering said in an interview. “The reality is that four-wheel drive gets you up to speed faster in snow and ice, but it doesn’t help you stop any quicker.”
In addition, men under age 45 are more likely to get into serious accidents on dry roads, perhaps because of overconfidence, the study of single-vehicle accidents involving Indiana drivers indicates.
Female drivers of all ages, meanwhile, lose control and crash on rain-slicked roads most often because of their failure to sense reduced friction on wet pavement, Mannering’s analysis of more than 23,000 police accident reports determined. But the crash rates involving women decline on snow and ice, Mannering said.
“I was somewhat surprised by the findings,” said Mannering, who is associate director for research at Purdue’s Center for Road Safety. He was assisted in the study by Abigail Morgan, a doctoral student at the university.
From - sltrib.com
Interesting! Up until a little over a year ago, I drove a 4WD pickup year round. I will say that pickups in general are horrible in the snow when they are empty. In fact, I had two other trucks with 2WD and would never take them out on snow or ice. The 4WD improved the traction and handling tremendously. I DO often notice people with 4WD driving way too fast for conditions, like the article states. It’s not uncommon to see them in the median on the highway where they spun out of control too. - Waterman12053
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