Tips for Driving Near Big Trucks
Because drivers frequently have to share roadways and interstates with big trucks, it’s important that they remain cautious and drive safely near these oversized vehicles.
Big trucks operate much differently than standard-sized passenger vehicles. Not only are they much larger, but they also weigh several times more than cars. In fact, it’s not uncommon for some big trucks to weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Because of their size and weight, trucks are much more difficult to maneuver or stop suddenly—and those are differences that all drivers need to be aware of.
To stay safe when driving near big trucks on the interstate, keep the following tips in mind:
- Avoid no-zones.
No-zones are areas where truck drivers can’t see you. They include the area directly the behind, the area directly in front of the truck or trailer, and the blind spots on the left and right sides of the trailer. Drivers who stay in truck no-zones are much more likely to be involved in accidents, as truck drivers are unable to see them when they turn, switch lanes, accelerate, or brake suddenly. The safest place to drive near a big truck is to follow directly behind it at a safe distance.
- Be careful when switching lanes in front of a truck.
Never switch lanes in front of a truck when driving on a roadway with a decline. Even a decline with a minor grade, such as two or three percent, can put enormous stress on a truck’s brakes. Switching lanes in front of a truck forces the driver to use his brakes excessively, which can cause them to fail and the truck to become impossible to stop. You should also never switch lanes in front of a truck and then slow down for any reason. Always accelerate and move over with plenty of room between your vehicle and the truck cabin.
- Never make a right turn at the same time as a truck.
In order to make right turns, trucks often have to swing out far into oncoming lanes of traffic. If you’re behind a truck and also waiting to make a right turn, it may look like you have room to complete your turn immediately after the truck pulls out, but when the driver corrects the angle of the trailer, it will collide with your vehicle. Many truck and trailers actually have diagrams of this scenario on the back to prevent it from occurring, but it’s still important to remind drivers that it’s a common and dangerous type of accident.
How Matt Hardin Law Can Help After a Truck Accident
Truck accidents can leave you too hurt to work and facing a mountain of debt for medical bills and vehicle repairs—not to mention all the wages you may lose due to your disability. At Matt Hardin Law, our Cookeville truck accident lawyers know how devastating a truck accident can be to you and your family. We also know that when you’re hurt, the last thing you want to deal with is filling out paperwork and dealing with the insurance company.
That’s why we’ll do everything in our power to take the stress off the truck accident off your shoulders. From collecting evidence and analyzing crash scene data, to determining who was at fault and negotiating with the insurance company, you can count on us to do the heavy lifting while you focus on getting better.
Get in touch with our legal team today. Just dial (931) 754-1188 or fill out a free online form. We’re ready to get to work on your claim.