It is an uncomfortable experience, driving right next to, behind, or in front of a massive commercial tractor-trailer. It’s enough to make any motorist a little nervous. Awareness of how these vehicles operate and their limitations can help you reduce your risk of an accident with these large vehicles.
Trucks Require a Longer Distance to Come to a Stop
Large commercial trucks have a much longer braking distance than passenger vehicles. This means that they take a much longer time to come to a complete stop after the driver applies the brakes.
That means that if you are driving in front of a commercial truck, make sure there is adequate distance between your vehicle and the truck behind you. So do not cut in front of a large truck and if one is riding too close to you, change lanes and allow the driver to pass. If you were to apply your brakes suddenly and the truck driver didn’t have enough room to stop, the truck would rear-end you, which can be deadly.
Trucks Have Large Blind Spots
The truck driver has several blind spots in his or her field of vision.
- Directly in front of the truck
- On the sides of the truck
- Right behind the truck
Any vehicle that is in these areas is invisible to the truck driver. That means the truck driver won’t see a vehicle in its blind spot as it tries to change lanes. Or it may not see a car right in front of it that hits the brakes.
Learn about these blind spots and avoid loitering in these areas for longer than is necessary. Also do not follow a truck too closely. And as noted above, do not cut in front of a large truck. Look at the driver’s rear view mirror – if you can’t see the driver, he can’t see you.
Trucks May Create Wind Gusts
Not many motorists are aware that when they drive by trucks or when a truck drives by them, it creates a wind gust. Be prepared for this, and keep both hands steady on the steering wheel. As noted above, do not linger next to a truck. Safely pass the truck quickly to avoid staying in its blind spot and to get away from the wind gusts.
Trucks May Take Longer to Change Lanes
If a driver is traveling at highway speeds, he may have to travel at least 700 feet, or the length of 2.5 football fields, before he changing lanes, reports AAA. If you see a truck driver signaling the intention to change lanes, give the driver plenty of space and time to do so.
If you suffer injuries in a trucking accident, discuss filing a claim for compensation with a truck accident attorney. Call 215-642-2335 to speak to a lawyer at Cordisco & Saile LLC. You can also fill out our contact form.