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A danger all drivers face

The tragic death of Paul Walker last weekend while riding as a passenger in a Porsche Carrera GT driven by his friend, who was a racecar driver, highlights one danger every driver faces every day. Overconfidence.

While it is unclear exactly what caused the car accident that left the two men dead, it is possible that the driver attempted some maneuver with the car and it resulted in the loss of control that led to the fiery crash.

Admittedly, the Carrera GT is a difficult car to drive, taxing even experienced racecar drivers at the controls. While few of us will ever have the opportunity to drive a $450,000 vehicle, we have all probably experienced a few narrow escapes with a vehicle.

Whether in congested Honolulu traffic, or following a scenic coast drive around Oahu, there are situations where every driver encounters the unexpected.

It may be caused by a sudden rainstorm rolling in over the mountains, or a thick fog. It may because by driver inattention, a momentary glance at a text on a phone, the need to change music on the radio or iPod, or a child crying out from the back seat.

It is easy to believe, because you have never had an accident when you changed lanes or read a text that you never will. But that is not the case. A negligent action by a driver may be harmless 999 times, but on that thousandth time, it may be deadly.

Driving is always a full-time job, whether in a Carrera GT on the track or a Minivan in a parking lot. Eternal vigilance is always called for. You literally cannot be too careful.

Source: CNN.com, "Porsche Carrera GT: 5 reasons the car Paul Walker died in is different," Holly Yan and Martin Savidge, December 3, 2013

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