Imagine that you are standing on the side of the road. You see a driver coming down the road next to you who appears to be distracted by texting on their phone. Instead of turning with the curve of the road the driver begins to drive towards a fruit cart stationed near the side of the road. You scream “Look out!” - what happens next?
It takes the driver a little bit of time to look up and realize what is going on, and the car keeps moving. The distance it moves in this time is called the Reaction Distance.
Once the driver realizes, they hit the brakes to try and stop before they hit the cart. The car starts slowing down at this point, but it's still moving! The distance it moves in this time is called the Braking Distance.
Putting these two together gives the Total Stopping Distance, which is how far the car travels from when you first said "Look out!" to when it comes to a full stop.
Answer the questions below, then determine if the person will be able to stop in time to avoid hitting the fruit cart.
If $R$R is the speed of the car in miles per hour, then
For each of the formulas above, look at the right hand side of the equal sign and answer the following questions:
What factors may increase or decrease the Total Stopping Distance from one driver to the next? How will this change the equation? Compare with a friend! Did they think of anything you didn’t?
Solve problems that can be modelled with first-degree equations, and compare algebraic methods to other solution methods