On freeways and highways, 18-wheelers drive over 60 miles per hour and carry tons of cargo in their trailers. If one of these vehicles gets in a collision with a car, it can result in a catastrophic injury or death of the other driver. How can we know if we are in a safe position around these trucks?
Despite the increase in car safety technology and information, truck accidents are now at a 30-year high. Drivers can help to keep themselves from adding to this statistic by knowing how to stay safe around these vehicles with the help of a few tips.
Do not crowd the truck
Semi-trucks have blind spots like any other car. The difference is that these trucks have much larger blind spots. Truck drivers cannot see a vehicle within 30 feet of the front or back of their truck. If you are within this space, a trucker may not even know that you are there, and could drive in a way that endangers you. These trucks also make wide right turns, so be sure not to get in their turning path.
Stay on the left
Truckers also have blind spots on either side of them. The right side of a truck is almost entirely a single blind spot. The truck’s left side is a blind spot from about the middle of the truck to the end of it. Stay on the left side of the vehicle when driving, and on the front half of it if possible. If you can, avoid staying on the sides of a semi-truck.
Everyone hates being stuck behind a semi-truck on the road, but impatience can be fatal. Speeding around the vehicle or tailgating it can quickly result in disaster. The trucks the time and space they need to maneuver safely.
Watch the weather
High winds, wet roads, and icy paths are dangerous for all drivers, but these threats impact 18-wheelers in higher capacities. If the weather is terrible for you, it is worse for trucks. Give these vehicles more significant space when the weather turns bad, and avoid passing them on the roads to prevent the risk of a truck sideswiping you.
Trucks are commonplace on the open road. With the odds of getting in an accident with one is higher than it has been in 30 years, everyone needs to do their part to ensure they are protecting themselves. Take extra precautions to make sure you stay safe around semi-trucks.