Are emergency brakes really that important?

The reason I ask is I know this girl who drove all the way from the Sun Broomfield campus to the Flat Iron Mall and back today with the emergency brake on in her husband’s brand new Toyota Tacoma…you know, the ‘2005 Motor Trend Truck of the Year.’

So, now she’s wondering if she should tell him or just not worry about it because maybe emergency brakes really aren’t that important. An emergency brake can’t really stop a big honking vehicle, can it? I think not because I…I mean ‘she’…was able to drive all the way to the mall and back with it on with no problem at all. Perhaps, emergency brakes are just some kind of placebo-like device to make one feel better prior to smashing into something because their real brake isn’t working.

In either case, the burned out brake was so worth the trip because she hit up the Lord & Taylor liquidation sale and got the following at *80% OFF*: newcoat

  • One lined lavender pant suit (perfect for spring and normally $300!)
  • One salmon wool coat (very Jackie O, normally $250, and pictured…’she’ let me try it on)
  • One tweed jacket
  • Two summer shirts for her child
  • A skirt for her child
  • Shorts for her child

Grand total on all of the above?


The look on her husband’s face when she tells him about the burned up brake sacrificed on the new truck so she could properly cloth herself and his child?


  1. #1 by Richard Elling on January 24, 2005 - 6:45 pm

    Emergency brakes saved my friend and his family’s life last October. They were hauling a trailer down a steep mountain grade with many switchbacks. The main brakes went out. If it weren’t for the emergency brakes, they would have surely gone off the edge and would have likely ended up in a heap on the desert floor.

  2. #2 by Linda Skrocki on January 24, 2005 - 6:53 pm

    Yeah, well, the salmon colored wool coat could save someone’s life if they drive off the edge of a mountain and have to spend the night in the bitter cold! πŸ˜‰

  3. #3 by rama on January 28, 2005 - 6:45 pm

    Us non-Coloradians don’t know how many miles this trip you describe was, but its unlikely you did much damage if any. (that’s not to say I wouldn’t be pissed if my significant other drove my new vehicle around with the brake on! :).

    The parking brake is just a mechanical means of engaging the brake pads. If anything, *perhaps* the rotors got slightly warped from over-heating, but that would be surprising given you didn’t notice they were engaged.

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