Knowing how much time and distance it takes to apply your brakes to completely stop your vehicle can help avoid errors in judgment that can lead to a collision. Three factors determine the time and distance it takes to stop.

## Perception time

Perception time is how long it takes to recognize a situation and understand that you need to stop. This can take about three-quarters of a second. Drivers with less experience often take longer to realize a danger exists. Perception distance is how far a vehicle travels during this time.

## Reaction time

Reaction time is how long it takes to respond to a situation by moving your foot from the accelerator pedal to the brake pedal. The average reaction time is 3/4 of a second. Reaction distance is how far a vehicle travels during this time.

## Braking time

Braking time is how long it takes a vehicle to stop after the brakes are applied. Braking distance is how far the vehicle travels during this time.

Stopping distance calculation

The chart below illustrates the minimum stopping distance for various speeds.

The stopping distances are averages for stopping on smooth, dry pavement.

Stopping time and distance - different speeds.

Many factors affect your stopping time and distance. These include road and weather conditions. Some factors you can control are: