How many car lengths should be between cars on the highway?

I remember my driver's ed instructor saying something about the number of car lengths you should leave between cars on the highway. But I don't remember the rule. How many car lengths should I keep between me and the car in front of me on the freeway?

Great memory! You’re definitely close to the answer, but part of the reason you can’t remember an exact number is that the answer changes depending on your speed.
The faster you’re driving, the longer it’ll take you to stop or react if something bad happens. If you want to be a safe driver, try to keep one car length for every 10 miles per hour you drive.
Alternatively, you could measure distance with the three-second rule. Just pick a spot on the road and count how many seconds it takes you to reach it after the car in front of you does. If it takes you less than three seconds, you’re too close.
Since you’re taking the time to learn safe driving rules, take another minute to save on car insurance with Jerry. A licensed broker, the Jerry app can help you compare personalized quotes from over 50 top providers like Progressive and Nationwide for free. When you find a better plan, Jerry can help you buy your new coverage and even help cancel your old policy!
Liz Jenson
Answered on Nov 18, 2021

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