A snippet from a Washington Post article about the latest snow-handling goatscrew in DC:
Er, what? Why is it supposed to be a good idea to have your vehicle automatically shut down in the middle of the highway if you start skidding?
Are Metrobus drivers so inept that any attempt on their part to regain control or mitigate the skid would inevitable aggravate the situation? That’s about the only rational reason I can think of for something like this.
I think they were referring to traction control and electronic stability control systems. The cars don’t “shut down,” but these systems do limit wheelspin and apply the brakes in order to prevent skids and loss of control.
The buses may have a traction control system that the driver cannot turn off.
I have a rear wheel drive car with "traction control’. In theory it should prevent an inexperienced driver from spinning out and losing control of the car. When the tires begin to slip, the ABS engages, the power is cut, and the gas pedal kicks back at my feet to tell me to look at the ‘low traction’ lights on the dash and slow the hell down.
In practice this feature can make it almost impossible to drive or even move the car under very slippery conditions unless I turn traction control off. Fortunatly there is a switch for that. Even better is the module I bought that plugs in behind the switch and reverses the ‘always on’ default to ‘always off’, unless I decide to turn it on.
I am guessing that the buses have something like that, and the drivers may not be able to over-ride the system.