Defensive driving takes on a whole new importance this time of year.
Potholes pose a real danger to your tires, your rims and your suspension It can be an expensive proposition. Keeping tires properly inflated can help ward off damage.
Another real danger is zigzagging to miss the pothole. If you don’t take the time to look before you move you can cross into another lane, or worse, hit another vehicle. It can happen very fast.
Even more unpredictable is the other drivers on the road. They may swerve to avoid a pothole and go right into your lane. So be very careful out there and keep your eyes on the road. Especially this time of the year.
Ed Harms - Safety Chairman
Heart Attacks in Women
It’s very important for women to be aware that the symptoms they experience may not be anything like men.
Men may have a sudden stabbing pain in the chest and cold sweats, grabbing the chest & dropping to the floor. Women may experience something totally different. Below is the story of one woman who experienced a heart attack without any previous symptoms.
--- I had a heart attack at about 10:30 PM with NO prior exertion and NO prior emotional trauma that one would suspect might have brought it on. I was sitting all snugly & warm on a cold evening, thinking, 'A-A-h, this is the life.
A moment later, I felt that awful sensation of indigestion but hadn't’t had a bite since about 5:00 PM. After it seemed to subside, the next sensation was like little squeezing motions that seemed to be racing up my spine gaining speed as they continued racing up and under my breast bone.
This fascinating process traveled into my throat and branched out into both jaws. 'AHA!! NOW I stopped puzzling about what was happening -- we all have read and/or heard about pain in the jaws being one of the signals of an MI happening, haven't we? I said aloud to myself, Dear God, I think I'm having a heart attack!
I got up and started to take a step and fell on the floor instead. I thought to myself, if this is a heart attack, I shouldn't be walking into the next room but, on the other hand, if I don't, nobody will know that I need help.
I walked slowly into the next room and dialed 911. I told her I thought I was having a heart attack. She said she was sending the paramedics over immediately, asked if the front door was near to me, and if so, to un-bolt the door and then lie down on the floor where they could see me when they came in.
I unlocked the door and then laid down on the floor as instructed and lost consciousness. I don't remember anything until I woke up in the hospital. I did not wake up again until the Cardiologist had threaded the teeny angiogram balloon up my femoral artery into the aorta and into my heart where they installed 2 stints to hold open my right coronary artery.
I know it sounds like all my thinking and actions at home must have taken at least 20-30 minutes before calling the paramedics, but it took perhaps 4-5 minutes before the call, and the fire station and hospital are only minutes away from my home. My Dr. was ready to go and got going on restarting my heart which had stopped somewhere between my arrival and installing the stents.
This is what I learned firsthand and every woman needs to know:
1. Be aware that something very different is happening in your body. Many more women than men die of their first (and last) MI because they didn't know they were having one. My female friends, your symptoms might not be exactly like mine, so I advise you to call the Paramedics if ANYTHING unpleasant happens that you've not felt before. It is better to have a 'false alarm' visitation than to risk your life guessing what it might be!
2. Note I said 'Call the Paramedics.' And if you can, take an aspirin. Ladies, TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE!
- Do NOT try to drive yourself to the ER - you are a hazard to others on the road.
- Do NOT have someone else drive you – they will panic.
- Do NOT call your doctor. He can’t get to you and won’t have the equipment he needs. The paramedics will call him for you.
3. Don't assume it couldn't be a heart attack because you have a normal cholesterol count. Pain in the jaw can wake you from a sound sleep.
Special Note…You can use Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant to call 911 for you!
Let's be careful and be aware. The more you know, the better chance you have of survival.
Ed Harms - Safety Chairman
Being in a caravan doesn’t increase your safety on the road and can actually increase your risk. Here are some of the dos and don’ts…
Keep a safe interval, depending on conditions, without lagging behind. (Recommended distance is 3 seconds) Remember, you havea line of cars that will have to rush to catch up when the leader picks up the pace if you’re behind. This causes an unsafe “whiplash” effect.
Let a metal car pass and/or get in line when they have a need to. Other cars on the road can be very discouraged or challenged by a long caravan and we can’t control other drivers.
Don’t “follow the leader” if conditions don’t lend themselves to a safe move for you. Instead, wait until it is safe to follow; remember, you can always get back into a caravan further up…we’ll let you in!
Although we enjoy “pedal to the metal” when traveling alone, a string of Corvettes makes a great target and the sheer number of cars might dictate a slower speed. This is especially true in congested areas/towns.
When appropriate, we’ll “play”, especially on squiggly roads, but you should drive at your comfort level keeping interval in mind.
It is courteous to change positions in a caravan from time to time. It is much easier to be right behind the leader than at the end of the line, so give everyone a turn. Be aware of which car is just in front of you and behind you so you can report if they have a problem.
Help the caboose; they have a huge responsibility to keep the caravan safe. The tighter a caravan rides, remembering safe intervals, the less difficult it is to keep everyone together.
When we come in towns and have a 4-lane road with stoplights, it is helpful to take both lanes. After the light, merge back into one line.
When the leader indicates they are going to change lanes and you are near the back of the caravan, move over when it is safe; this makes it easier for all the cars in front of you to change lanes.
If you need/want to leave the caravan for any reason, notify the leader and caboose first…perhaps it’s time for everyone to take a break. We won’t worry if we know why you left.
Keep your FRS radio (tuned to 11-0) handy for directions and safety warnings.
Put your parking/road lights on to increase visibility.
Ed Harms - Safety Chairman
It's Racing Season!
Spring is a great time to give your car a thorough safety checkup before you get on the roads. This is especially true when you are planning to join NSCC at a racing event. Spending time now prepares your car for optimum performance and safety! Here’s what you can do at home to prepare your car for the track.
Empty the car of any/all loose objects. Leave as much as you can at home.
Seatbelts: need to be checked for good operation.
Windshield: cannot have any cracks that threaten safety. Be sure your wiper fluid is full to keep the windshield clean.
Brakes: adequate pads, rotors in good shape, and adequate fluid. Solid pedal with no “sponginess”. When did you put in new fluid last? Be sure your brake lights work.
Tires: street legal with minimum 2/32” tread in good shape. (Racing slicks exempt). Be sure to check your tire pressure.
Tie rods, ball joints, and steering links: solid, no play or binding.
Motor mounts: no play of mounts or engine rubbing on hoses or cables.
Coolant system: all hoses free of cracks, clamps tight and reserve tank to the full line. Have you had it flushed lately?
Fuel system: throttle linkage free and tight. Hoses solid, clamps tight, no visible leaks.
Oil system: be sure it’s topped off with no visible leaks.
Helmet: Snell or DOT (loaners are available)
Battery: make sure it is secure.
Our autocross events are low speed. However, you will do lots of braking, turning and generally putting your car through actions not experienced in everyday driving. A car that is carefully maintained and given a good going over on a regular basis can save you problems later—it’s especially important for a racing event.