Many truck drivers see the highway as their office and believe they have a duty to assist motorists in trouble. Truckers tend to be conscientious, courteous and cautious. Nevertheless, the Alabama truck accident attorneys at Long & Long recommend several safety tips for driving with truckers, and offer some statistics from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
According to 2007 NHTSA statistics 18% of fatal truck accidents resulted from a passenger vehicle hitting the rear end of the semi. Keep a minimum of 3 seconds between you and the vehicle in front of you. If you can’t see the driver in his side mirror, he can’t see you, and you are too close. This takes us to the next tip.
You are the driver of your vehicle
Truckers are taught to ignore vehicles directly behind them. The only time they drive according to what is behind them is when they change lanes. They intentionally leave responsibility for vehicles behind them with the driver’s of those vehicles.
Scan the road continuously
Scan at least ¼ mile of roadway ahead, watching for potential changes involving or affecting:
- Other drivers’ behaviors
- Road or weather conditions
- Other vehicles
- How long traffic lights have been red or green
Check all mirrors every 30 seconds. Use side mirrors as often as your rear view mirror.
Every Inch Off-center
There is impact from off-center collisions compared to head-on collisions. If driving near a trucker forces you into a head-on accident, reduce speed and pull as far to the right as safety permits.
Truckers are pressured by deadlines and competition for extra runs. Stress leads to recklessness or exhaustion, increasing the risk of an accident. Watch for signs of drowsiness, distraction, or intoxication such as weaving, drifting or erratic behavior.
If you have been involved in a trucking accident please contact Long & Long, the Alabama accident attorneys in Mobile and Baldwin Counties, Alabama.