6 Important Tips on Driving Near Trucks
Commercial truck and passenger vehicle accidents can be tragic. Because of the size and weight of a commercial truck, these collisions can cause serious injury or even (God forbids) death to the victims.
Here are some safety tips to keep in mind when driving around commercial trucks:
Avoid Blinds Spots
A commercial truck typically has more blind spots than a passenger vehicle, which blocks a greater amount of space. A truck driver’s ability to see an approaching vehicle can be gravely affected because of this.
Try to avoid the following areas while driving near a commercial truck:
- On the driver’s side, the lane extends out to half the trailer’s length.
- On the truck’s right, there are two lanes.
- It’s also important to note that if you can’t see the truck driver in the mirrors, he or she might not be able to see you.
Use Your signals
Commercial trucks are significantly larger and heavier than the majority of other vehicles on the road. These vehicles take more time and distance to pass through traffic due to their size.
It is important to always use the turn signals before changing lanes around a commercial truck.
When you use your turn signals, the truck driver will be able to see what you are doing and adapt accordingly, allowing you to make your move safely and prevent a collision.
Trucks Need Space
When driving alongside a commercial truck, always leave plenty of space. These vehicles require more road space than passenger vehicles.
When making a big right, a truck will take up two lanes. You can never pass a truck turning right on the right side because you could get caught between the truck and the curb.
Furthermore, following too closely behind a commercial truck raises the risk of an accident. This will happen when:
- The commercial truck unexpectedly breaks, causing the car to tip over or slide under its trailer.
- Blown tires that can collide with your vehicle or shatter your windshield.
- Always keep a commercial truck at least four seconds ahead of you to allow the driver enough room and time to respond to any emergencies.
Pass With Caution
Passing a commercial truck should be done with caution because commercial trucks take longer to pause and navigate through traffic. Furthermore, semi-truck drivers may reduce or increase their speed as they travel uphill or downhill, so avoid passing the vehicle in these areas.
It is also easier for a truck driver to see you if you drive on the left side of the truck. Pass on the left while maintaining a safe speed and properly signaling. Wait until you can see the truck’s driver in your rearview mirror before merging back into the truck’s lane.
Furthermore, as a truck passes you, hold to the right and slow down. This gives the truck driver more room to maneuver safely and helps you to get out of the truck’s blind spot quicker. Headlights should be adjusted.
Bear in mind that your headlights can cause a truck driver to become blind if they bounce off the truck’s wide mirrors. If you see an oncoming truck or other vehicle approaching you on the lane, you should lower your high beams.
Put Your Seatbelt On
Seat belts are mandatory by law in many countries for all front-seat occupants and passengers under the age of 16. Wearing a seat belt will shield you in the event of a truck accident, and it is one of the most important ways to lower the risk of injury or (God forbids) death.
Distractions when driving divert your attention away from the road and your car’s control, putting everyone on the road at risk. When driving, you should always keep your eyes on the road and avoid distractions such as:
- Typing and texting,
- Making and receiving calls
- Passengers conversations
- Eating and drinking
- Using GPS and other gadgets
- Changing the radio or car features