What is the 2-Second Rule?

The 2-second rule is a technique used to estimate a safe following distance between your vehicle and the traffic ahead. It is a general rule of thumb taught in every driving school across the United States. The premise is that by following behind traffic by two seconds, you will have the time and space to brake safely.

How Exactly Does the 2-second Rule Work?

This rule requires that you maintain a safe following distance regardless of your driving speed. To estimate a safe distance, wait until the rear end of the vehicle you're following to pass a fixed object, such as an overhead road sign, a signpost, or a tree.

When the car in front passes the landmark, the front of your vehicle should pass the same fixed point within the allotted two seconds. If you take less than two seconds, you should increase the distance. Repeat this method until you're able to maintain a distance of at least two seconds.

The State of Wisconsin Department of Transportation also recommends drivers to adjust their driving to accommodate various road conditions. The DOT suggests using 3 seconds at night, and 4 seconds during bad weather. In addition, drivers should be more cautious when approaching intersections, changing lanes, and braking for a stop light.

The Importance of the 2-Second Rule

Practicing the 2-second rule is essential for many reasons. Here are reasons why you should use this rule.

Reduce the Risk of Collisions

Generally, it can take you a second to discover that a car ahead has stopped. This leaves you with only a second to either take evasive action or bring your vehicle to a complete stop to avoid a possible collision. The 2-second rule can also reduce the severity of injuries in case of a crash.

Create a Safety Buffer

Sometimes it isn't easy to estimate the appropriate following distance or stop times that are suggested for a given speed. The 2-second rule provides an easy, common-sense method to handle these problems and create a buffer, improving road safety.

Avoid Aggressive Drivers

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Council (NHTSC), aggressive driving causes collisions, injuries, and even fatalities, and it should be avoided. So if the person ahead is driving aggressively or tailgating, you may want to provide enough space to prevent emergencies. Remember that if the car you're following ends up in a crash, it'll be even more challenging for you to avoid rear-ending them.

Looking for a Professional Milwaukee Car Accident Attorney? Get In Touch Today

The 2-second rule is a tried and true rule of thumb that has helped millions of motorists safely navigate roadways for years. However accidents are inevitable, and when they occur, you want to find a qualified attorney to represent you.

Natasha Misra Law fights for your rights to receive fair compensation for your injuries and losses. We work with clients from Milwaukee, Madison, Hales Corners, Appleton, and Green Bay. Please contact us today to consult with our professional attorneys about your car accident.


Worrying about the safety of your newborn is totally normal. But just like everything else you will learn to do as a parent, driving with a baby on board will become second nature. 

There are a number of steps you can take to ensure that your child is protected and that you keep them as safe as possible while on the road. In this blog, we will discuss a few safe driving tips that all new parents should know about.

Use the Right Car Seat

Infant safety seats come in different styles, and types and not all of them are designed to fit every car. Choosing the right seat can help you keep your baby safe and protected at all times. The right seat for your little one will be sized appropriately according to the baby's size, age, height, and weight.

The car seat should also have good ratings and be compatible with your vehicle's seats as well as the anchor systems. Ensure the seat is up to the NHTSA standards and easy to install in your car. It helps to ask for a test installation before purchasing a safety seat for your child.

Consider Your Baby's Needs When Planning for the Journey

If you're planning a long-distance trip, ensure you set up appropriate times for feeding and changing. Otherwise, you'll be caught up between tasks, which isn't a great experience when driving. You don't want your baby to become irritated or uncomfortable. Feed and change your baby before you hit the road. Also, remember to pack everything you need, including toys, to help keep your baby quiet and entertained in the car.

Don't Leave Your Little One Alone in the Car

You should never leave your baby in the vehicle alone, even when you feel it is safe to do so. Not only can leaving a child in a car result in overheating, but accidents can also still occur that put your baby at risk of physical harm. No matter the situation, be sure to take your baby with you every time you park and leave your vehicle.

Practice Defensive Driving

Having defensive driving skills as a new parent is essential. That means you're in ready mode—prepared for the unexpected, staying alert, controlled speed, and reacting calmly to other drivers. Additionally, you should try to avoid distractions at all costs, whether they're from your baby, your phone, or other road users. That way, you'll remain focused and avoid hazardous situations.

Need an Experienced Milwaukee Car Accident Attorney? Call us Today

It's your responsibility to make sure your baby is safe on the road. Ensure the baby is strapped correctly to the safety seat, well-fed, and avoid unnecessary distractions when driving. However, in case you encounter an inevitable accident, we are here to help.

Natasha Misra

My law practice is dedicated to helping people who have suffered injuries in accidents which were not their fault. Born and raised in Milwaukee, I come from a family of medical professionals. My background and experience help me understand and represent individuals injured in accidents.