Years ago, one of my sons summed up his fall down the stairs by describing it as a “cool ride, dude.”
That might be the way he would also sum up this educational video posted on Corvette Forum that shows a C7 Z06 doing a wild 360 spin as he enters the interstate in heavy rain.
Fortunately, no one was hurt in either incident, but we can always learn something from events like these. For instance, in my son’s case, don’t run downstairs without holding onto the rail.
The lessons learned from the Corvette’s spin are a little more in-depth, and we appreciate “Nelno” being willing to share his experience with others. Of course, now that we know everyone is safe and sound, that video showing the view from his PDR is one cool ride, dude! We’ve already watched it five times and threw our hands up in the air like we were on a roller coaster each time; fortunately, no one was in the office at the time to witness our childish shenanigans!
On a more serious note, though, Nelno says he posted the video because he believes in trying to learn from his mistakes. “As such, I’ve watched the video dozens of times,” he says, “and imported it into Cosworth Toolbox to analyze what I could (not that the GM version of Cosworth was much help).”
He wants to share his takeaways with other enthusiasts and begins his assessment by noting that it’s smart never to underestimate or dismiss road conditions. “What is behind you doesn’t necessarily reflect what is ahead,” he warns. “I made some assumptions that were wrong this day, when in every other case I can recall, I have checked the weather beforehand and skipped driving if there was even a small chance of rain.”
Doing 80 mph in such conditions was likewise too fast, he admits, and probably contributed to the spin. He says he was just trying to go fast enough that he could merge onto the interstate behind a pickup and in front of an SUV.
“Had I been going slower, I might not have hydroplaned,” he says. “But if I had still hydroplaned, I would likely have been closer to the SUV and hit it, or been hit by it. After this event, I felt the car hydroplaning on the highway at 60 mph before I was able to pull off onto the frontage road.”
With cars behind him in the rightmost lane, slowing down to 60 or less wasn’t a good option, he believes, “so I’m not sure what to take away from this.”
“I feel partially vindicated in that when I did spin, there was nothing right next to me,” he says, “but not spinning at all would have been best. 60-ish mph (normal speed limit is 70 or 75 on this part of highway) would have been better, despite the speed of traffic on the highway. Slower speed would have also allowed for more time to recognize the water on the road ahead.”
Nelno says he didn’t have the car in Weather mode and believes it might have helped “somewhat.” “It was probably just bad luck that I applied the accelerator to maintain speed right at that point,” he says. ‘I certainly wouldn’t have applied the accelerator if I realized I was about to hit standing water.”
He also warns others to keep a close watch on the tread of your tires, pointing out the tire that lost traction first was the lowest, just barely above the tread wear marker.
He summarizes his suggestions by saying:
Check the weather beforehand for any chance of rain. If you do get caught in the rain, don’t assume it’s a light rain. Remember to check the tread on your tires because they’re not going to channel water as well the more worn they get. Slow down, even if everyone else is going 70 or 80. IMMEDIATELY change to Weather mode if it starts raining.
While Nelno says it was bad luck to accelerate just as he hit the water, he does admit he was lucky in many other ways: lucky the SUV driver didn’t overreact and stayed in his lane and slowed down, lucky he didn’t swerve and roll, and lucky he got some traction back right before entering the service lane.
In short, he admits, “it just worked out.”
We’re glad that Nelno and his Z06 are safe and sound, along with everyone else in this educational video, and appreciate the words of wisdom shared by someone who has already been there and done that.
[VIDEO] Despite Destruction All Around, A 1969 Corvette Survives Hurricane Laura
[ACCIDENT] Corvette Stingray Driver Takes A Wrong Turn and Ends up in Texas Ditch
[VIDEO] Classic Cars Damaged after Roof Collapses Due to Heavy Snow