How to Do an Emergency Stop?

When we drive a semi-trailer, there is a high chance of encountering an emergency stop. There are usually two situations in an emergency stop: the car in front suddenly stops, or your semi-trailer breaks down. These two cases will be handled differently.

The car in front suddenly stops

In this case, all we need to do is to stop the semi-trailer quickly and safely. In the event of sudden braking, you can use the following two methods:

Control braking

The premise of using this method is that the semi-trailer has an anti-lock brake system. Don’t worry, all Three Horses Trailer’s semi-trailers have anti-lock braking systems. Using controlled braking allows you to use the brakes as much as possible without locking the wheels.

While doing this, keep the steering wheel movements very small. If you need to make a larger steering adjustment or the wheels lock, release the brakes and reapply the brakes as soon as possible.

anti-lock braking system

Stab braking

This method is only suitable for semi-trailers without anti-lock braking system. In this case, braking can follow the following three steps:

  1. Apply your brakes all the way.
  2. Release brakes when wheels lock up.
  3. As soon as the wheels start rolling, apply the brakes fully again. (It can take up to 1 second for the wheels to start rolling after you release the brakes. If you reapply the brakes before the wheels start rolling, the vehicle will not straighten out.

Note: Do not jam on the brakes. Because hard braking doesn’t mean pressing the brake pedal as hard as possible. Because this will keep the wheel locked and cause the wheel to slip. There is no way to control the truck if the wheels are slipping.

Semi-trailer malfunction

When your semi-trailer breaks down and you’re off the road, you need to do something to alert other drivers.

1. Hazard lights

After the semi-trailer is stopped, activate the hazard warning lights before deploying warning devices around the semi trailer. It’s a must-do, but hazard lights are no substitute for placing warning devices around the semi-trailer.

2. Place a warning device

You need to place warning devices around the truck within 10 minutes after you have parked. For different terrains, the way to place the warning device is also different, you can refer to the picture below for placement.


Other tips:

  • Wear a reflective vest when working outside the truck. This is very necessary. If you don’t have one, then buy one and bring it with you before departure.
  • Use a flashlight at night. This is not only to make you more visible but also to keep you aware of the road and avoid slipping or falling.

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