Stay safe when sharing the road with trucks

Wednesday September 5, 2018

As a driver, you may share the road with large trucks and semis on a daily basis. However, you may not know that it can be dangerous to do so. Here are some facts you may not have known about large trucks and semis that can help you stay safe on the road.

 

Trucks have large blind spots

As a driver, you know that vehicles have blind spots. However, typical cars only have two blind spots: one on each side. You may not know that large trucks have more blind spots, and they are much larger. The areas in which a large truck driver cannot see another car are called “no zones,” and they include:

  • In front: Because of the height of large trucks, there is a large blind spot from the front of the truck that extends 20 feet.
  • In back: The large trailer that large trucks carry can make it hard to see what is behind them. It is wise for drivers to avoid the 30 feet that extend from the back of the truck.
  • On the left: When you are driving on the left of a large truck, take caution as there is a relatively large blind spot spanning at least one lane.
  • On the right: The right of large trucks is where the biggest no zone is. Make sure to take extra care when driving next to large trucks and give them plenty of space on the right.

Trucks take a long time to stop

Normal cars can go from 60 to zero in 120-140 feet and have it take around 7 seconds. Large trucks, on the other hand, take a much longer time to stop, as well as needing a lot more distance. The FMCSA states that large trucks need a distance of two football fields to come to a full stop. Because of this, you will want to avoid quick breaking in front of large trucks.

Trucks take wide turns

When large trucks turn right, they need a lot of space. If a truck is turning right they will not be able to see a smaller car if it is in the way and in turn could be run over. Trucks should give warning to other cars on the road by signaling, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Give trucks wide berth when they are turning to avoid an accident.

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