Wednesday, 4 July 2007

Flood Driving.

I do have reservations about posting this. Truth is, those police officers were probably on their way to some thing that desperately needed their presence.
But then. What muppetry from the driver. It's a Renault van, not a big truck, or Land Rover. It's a diesel engined vehicle, so although it has no water-fearing HT leads, Renault, in the past, have been a bit notorious for low engine air intakes.
The driver should, of course, be trained to cope. And the first rule of flood driving is to know the water depth. He did not wait long enough to properly gauge that. And he should have proceeded at a gentler pace.
If you get the speed right, you minimise the splashing, and form a bow-wave, which sails along in front of you, leaving a lower trough under the front of the vehicle.
This driver, in all probability wrecked the engine. When a diesel engine ingests a lump of water, the results are not pretty. Very strong things bend or break. The engine does not run again.
At half the speed, they would have driven out the other side. Reason for the stop was incompetent driving, no other.
Any emergency vehicle driver should know the adage, "It's better to get there a little bit late, than not get there at all."

Me? A smartypants? Hmm. Well yes. I do drive through deep water, on a fairly regular basis... rather deeper than that. And I've yet to stuff an engine.

The floods were recent. Judging by the voices, I'd place the incident in South Yorkshire, or maybe just over the border in Derbyshire.

My estimate, based on the video and examination of a similar van is that the water was between seven and nine inches deep.
I note 11 hits on this site from a Police-Net ISP, resolving to Sheffield.... Comments, guys?

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