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How to Safely Share the Road with Trucks

How to Safely Share the Road with Trucks

Accidents with commercial trucks can be disastrous. Big rigs can weigh anywhere from 10,000 to 80,000 pounds, so if a commercial vehicle strikes another automobile or a person with that much weight at high speed, the results are catastrophic. Many people know that big trucks are dangerous, but they aren’t entirely aware of how much. While they might try and avoid driving next to a semi, some smaller vehicles will perform dangerous maneuvers, such as passing a truck on the wrong side. Here are a few tips to help drivers of smaller vehicles be safer on the road with commercial trucks nearby.

Be Aware of a Truck Driver’s Field of Vision

If a truck begins to wander into your lane, it’s likely because the driver can’t see you. Commercial trucks have many blind spots on both sides, directly in front, and directly in back of the vehicle. Smaller cars have the unfortunate tendency to sit in those places longer than they should, which often causes sideswipe accidents. If you’re aware of these blind spots, you can avoid them.

Slower Reactions

While commercial trucks are large and powerful, their bulk also makes them slower. They have a slightly slower speed limit than the rest of the vehicles on the highway, and their weight makes it much harder for them to come to a stop quickly. For example, if a truck is going 65 miles per hour and needs to stop, it needs about 200 yards of space (nearly the length of 2 football fields) to do so. They have the same problem with speeding up. However, just because trucks have a slower reaction time, it doesn’t mean you can cut them off without repercussions. Be patient with large trucks to keep yourself safer.

Wind / Drafts

Semi trucks have a log of surface area, which gives the wind more space on which to push the vehicle. An imbalanced truck could be pushed right over and onto any nearby vehicles. Likewise, big trucks can often leave slipstreams in their wake, which can cause smaller vehicles to wobble. If you are caught by surprise, you could cause an accident if you overcorrect the steering as a result.

The best thing to do when sharing a road with a commercial vehicle is to give it plenty of space. If you have to pass it, do so quickly and on the left-hand side. However, if you are a loved one were injured by a negligent truck driver, give our skilled Greenville truck accident attorneys a call.

Contact us at (864) 408-8890 or fill out our online form to schedule a free case consultation today.

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