Sharing the road with semi trucks can be stressful in a car that is a fraction of their size. Due to these types of trucks being so large, they have particular limitations when it comes to seeing in their rearview mirror or looking out of their blind spots, which can be dangerous to other drivers in standard passenger vehicles who are also on the road. According to the US department of transportation, there are ten things drivers can do to help them stay safe on the road with a large truck that has such a disadvantage:
- Pass Safely – Ensure you see the driver in their side view mirror before passing. Then signal clearly (a few seconds at least), and move into the left lane at an accelerated speed so you can get past the truck promptly. Also, be sure you don't linger in the truck blind spot, so you are visible for as long as possible.
- Always Stay out of Their Blind Spot – The best way to know if you are in the driver's blind spot is by looking in the truck's side mirror. If you can't see the person driving, they can't see you.
- Don't Drive Too Close – Tailgating or riding too close to the back of a truck can be dangerous. Give enough room between your vehicle and the large truck in front of you to ensure you have enough reaction time if they abruptly stop or swerve.
- Avoid Cutting it Close – It's never wise to quickly cut off a large or semi-truck. When passing, give yourself enough time to signal safely and transition into the lane. This will also help you avoid being in their blind spot.
- Have Patience – larger vehicles like commercial and semi trucks have restrictions and tools like speed limiters that aren't required for regular passenger vehicles. Aggressive driving, honking, or weaving through traffic won't help. It will just create a more significant distraction and pose a bigger threat.
- Buckle Up – Not wearing a seatbelt is one of the drivers' biggest mistakes. It will save your life. Always wear your seatbelt when behind the wheel, especially when sharing the road with large trucks. If you have children in the car, always ensure they are also safely buckled in their seats.
- Anticipate Wide Turns – Unlike standard cars, trucks require more room for turning. They swing out much wider and may even initiate their turn from the middle lane. Always avoid squeezing by or fitting in between the truck and the curb.
- Never Drive Tired – if you feel fatigued while behind the wheel, don't be afraid to take a break or have a passenger switch places with you and take turns driving. This will help avoid cognitive distractions and keep you and your passengers safer on the roads.
- Do Not Drive Under the Influence – Drugs and alcohol should never be used when driving. The impairment can cause delayed reaction times, poor judgment, and an overall threat to you and others on the road.
- Stay Focused – Avoid being distracted by things that are part of driving. This could be anything from changing the radio, adjusting your GPS, eating and drinking, or attending to kids or pets in the backseat.
Contact an Attorney
Even with the proper steps and precautions, avoiding collisions with large trucks isn't always possible. Due to the significant size and weight differences, victims of trucking-related accidents often sustain severe life-altering injuries. Contact an attorney immediately if you or someone you know has suffered the effects of a trucking-related accident. Working with a skilled professional can benefit your case and get you the financial relief you deserve. Here at Hanna Allen, PLLC we have what it takes to fight for your rights while you focus on your recovery. Let us help you.
Contact us today at (432) 220-2649 or visit us online to get started on your free consultation.