Safety tips for driving near semi-trucks

It’s important to be very careful when driving near semi-trucks. They pose an extensive danger to people in other vehicles. If there’s an accident between a passenger vehicle and someone in a semi, odds are that the person in the smaller car is going to be more severely injured. More energy is enacted on their vehicle and on their body during the collision because of the difference in mass between both vehicles.

What can you do to stay safer? Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Stay out of blind spots

Trucks have four main blind spots, two of which are on the sides stretching back from the front windows. There’s also a small blind spot directly in front of the truck, and one directly behind it. Even a driver who is using their mirrors properly may not see a vehicle traveling in these areas.

Watch for wide turns

Trucks almost always have to make wide turns. If they’re turning left, this means that there’s a risk of a collision with any vehicles on the cross street that have stopped too far forward in the intersection – especially if they are turning left themselves. If a truck is turning right, the driver may move slightly to the left to create more space. People in small vehicles will sometimes drive up into that space, where they can’t be seen in the blind spot, and be hit when the truck turns.

Remember stopping distances

Semi-trucks need stopping distances that are almost twice as long as passenger cars. Never cut a truck off, even unintentionally. For instance, a truck should start slowing down sooner than a passenger car if a red light is approaching. Drivers will sometimes move into the space in front of the truck and then hit the brakes, but there’s no way for the truck driver to slow down as fast as that car. This scenario can easily cause a rear-end accident.

Exploring your options

These tips can help you avoid a serious accident, but there’s no guarantee you won’t be injured due to someone else’s mistakes. If so, seek legal guidance promptly to better protect your interests.

Archives

FindLaw Network