Where are you driving, really?

Certainly, Paul Walker and Roger Rodas did not believe when they left the charity event on Saturday they were going to crash within minutes. Sure, the car they were driving, a red 2005 Porsche Carrera GT was temperamental and could be dangerous if mishandled. But, they were both experienced racecar drivers. The driver could easily handle the Porsche on a city street well enough to avoid a car accident.

Nonetheless, the Carrera GT struck a utility pole and exploded into flames, killing both men. Police ruled out that they were street racing with another car, but they suspect speed played a role in the accident.

The Carrera GT is a car capable of extreme acceleration and is equipped with a 610 horsepower V-10 engine. It has been described by one driver as being “scary.” Perhaps Rodas hit the accelerator too hard, perhaps a tire blew out or it may be that some combination of misjudgments by Rodas caused him to lose control.

While few of us will ever have access to such a vehicle, we all experience moments where we teeter on the edge on an unrecoverable error while driving. If you are lucky, it passes, and you go on to work, school or a store, and never give it another thought.

And it is not just our actions. We are all at the mercy of other drivers. Drivers, who may be drunk, distracted or incapacitated by a heart attack or stroke. You never know. Your best defense is to stay alert, not just to your own potential for s mistake, but all drivers with whom you share the road.

Source: CNN.com, “Paul Walker’s death: Video shows car erupted in flames after 60 seconds,” Alan Duke, December 3, 2013

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