The Two-Second Rule

Today, whilst driving home on Knecht Road in Palm Bay (a 35 MPH road), one of two cops standing on the side of the street motioned for me to stop. So I stopped and rolled down the window, but only about halfway. I looked at him with my shades on and a “what the hell do you want” expression. After a brief moment of silence, as if he had to make up something to say, he spoke:

“What’s a safe distance between moving vehicles?” he asked.

“About 2 seconds” I replied (because I’m such a hardcore traffic-safety guru).

“So how far apart were you from the car ahead of you?”

Without hesitation I said about 1 to 1.5 seconds, which is my average distance on 35 MPH roads and a fair estimate of how far I really was from the car in front of me — I was by no means tailgating.

“Try about .5 seconds,” he said, and warned me that not adhering to the two-second safety rule would result in a “big ticket”.

I rolled up the window and drove away chuckling (without my seatbelt fastened, mind you). Seriously, guys…no, I’m not going to use a donut joke…but don’t you have anything better to do?