6 Proactive Steps You Can Take to Avoid Truck Accidents

Truck accidents often lead to injury and death. Understanding ways to avoid accidents with large trucks and buses can save lives.

Understanding the Huge Blind Spots to Avoid Truck Accidents

Large trucks and buses have huge blind spots.  They include:

  • 20 feet in front of a large truck
  • 30 feet behind a large truck
  • The left lane from behind the driver’s cab to almost the rear of the vehicle
  • The two right lanes from the front of the truck to the rear of the vehicle

Do not drive in these blind spots. Slow down or move ahead to ensure visibility.

Pass Large Trucks Safely to Avoid Truck Accidents

Bear in mind the truck’s blind spots when passing a large truck.  First, clearly signal your intent to pass the truck, while more than 30 feet behind the truck so the driver can see you signal.  Once in the left lane, accelerate so you pass the truck quickly but also safely.  Be mindful not to linger in a blind spot.  Once in front of the truck, do not return to the lane before making sure the truck is visible in your rearview mirror.  Never pass a truck in the right lane.

Expect Wide Turns

Many, if not most, large trucks need extra turning room.  They may swing wide, or they may initiate a right turn from the middle lane, rather than the far right, as is customary for smaller vehicles.   If you see a truck signaling a right turn from the middle lane, respect the message.   Under no circumstances should you attempt to use the right lane as a means to either pass the truck or turn right before the truck.

Understand Truck Limitations

Many trucks and buses have operating restrictions and limitations.  Most large trucks top out on speed between 60 and 80 miles per hour.  Honking, tailgating, gesturing, or other behavior meant to get a truck driver to speed up cannot overcome these limitations.  Doing so only creates distractions for both the truck driver and other drivers on the road.

Stay Focused on the Task at Hand

In this day and age, texting, talking on the phone, and even reading email seem to be common past times for drivers.  This conduct is dangerous for you and everyone else on the road.  Trucks require a greater amount of time to stop.  They need more space to change lanes.  Their vehicles are not nearly as agile as yours.  Consequently, it is essential that you keep your focus on your driving and the road.  This reduces the potential for erratic driving.  This, in turn, reduces the likelihood a truck driver will need to take sudden, evasive action to avoid an accident.

Obey All Traffic Laws

Truck drivers have certain expectations of other drivers on the roadway.  Avoid excessive speed.  Do not weave in and out of traffic.  If you are driving more slowly, stay in the right lane.  If you have any question about whether or not you are visible, turn on your headlights.

If You Have Been Injured in a Truck Accident

Sometimes, even the most cautious drivers get in accidents.  If you have been in an accident with a truck, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.  Our attorneys are well versed in commercial vehicle accidents.  Let us put our experience to work for you.  Contact the attorneys at Miller Kory Rowe LLP at (602) 461-8640.

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