An 18-wheeler truck going at 70 mph on any freeway is a deadly missile. There is nothing a small-vehicle driver can do to influence a truck’s weight, its driver’s fatigue, or its brake maintenance – all major causes of truck accident injuries and deaths. But there are some things you can do to protect yourself while on the same freeway as the trucks.
Five “Never” Tips For Your Driving Safety
- Never drive in a trucker’s blind spot. Remember that a large truck has large blind spots, and has them on all four sides of the vehicle. That means you need to leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the big rig, whichever side of it you are on.
- Never change lanes suddenly in front of a truck because such a large and heavy vehicle cannot slow down suddenly.
- Never leave your disabled vehicle (flat tire, out of gas) in a travel lane, or only partially on the shoulder. Get it as far from the traffic as possible to keep it safe, and yourself as well, if you are working on it. Smaller vehicles can swerve but not large trucks. If you can, park it in a place that has good visibility for oncoming traffic rather than on a curve or screened by large trees.
- Never try to drive to the right of a truck getting ready to make a right turn. The driver probably cannot see you, and even if he can, he cannot quickly change his movement to allow you past.
- Never pull out into the traffic flow in front of an 18-wheeler without quickly accelerating. Wait until it has gone by, and choose a gap in the traffic, as large as you can get in that time and place. Once a large truck is traveling up to speed, its weight continues the momentum far longer than a smaller vehicle’s weight does.
These tips boil down to two overarching tips:
- Always give a truck lots of space
- Always give a truck lots of time
You could imagine that the truck doesn’t end at its surface or its load’s surface. It extends out in all directions for many yards, perhaps a hundred yards in front, depending on its load and speed. That “aura” around the truck is a deadly danger zone for you as the driver of a smaller vehicle. If you stay out of it, you will be far less likely to ever be in a truck accident.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a truck accident, please contact our experienced truck accident attorneys today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about your legal rights and options.