How to Safely Drive Near Semi-Trucks
A lot of motorists often see trucks as lumbering giants on the road just wanting to cause an accident. A slight feeling of resentment and annoyance creeps into most of us when a truck happens to get in our way as we speed down the highway, and our first impulse would almost always be to step on the gas and overtake.
However, it might be surprising to know that even though it is widely known that commercial truck drivers often drive fatigued and are thus more likely to make mistakes, statistics actually show that trucks are involved in fewer accidents compared to cars and other smaller vehicles per 100 million miles driven. A number of researchers also say that as high as 80% of car-truck collisions are caused by car drivers.
A few of the unsafe acts that are commonly committed by car drivers include the following:
- Driving near or in the truck’s blind spots
- Driving in the middle of two trucks
- Driving too close and getting blown away by the cross-wind
- Unsafe or abrupt passing, merging, or lane-changing
- Racing a truck in a turn
- Tailgating (driving too close to the rear)
Accident statistics seem to tell that no one party is blameless and that both sides are, in most cases, equally responsible. However, crashes that involve trucks are often catastrophic, especially for the smaller vehicle, which is why it only makes sense for cars that drive alongside trucks to be extra cautious.
Other vehicles on the road should keep in mind that even though truck drivers are certified and receive extensive training, they do contend with a number of factors that put them at a disadvantage. As mentioned, drivers are often pressured to work long hours which take a toll their alertness and decision-making, and in worst cases, cause them to fall asleep at the wheel. Even though there are measures drivers can take to ward off fatigue, factors such as vehicle failure, environmental conditions, and unexpected road obstacles (ex. wild animals or pedestrians) are also major contributors which the truck driver doesn’t have any control over.
Bottom-line is that there is just too much to lose in a truck accident, and everybody benefits when they get to prevent one. Driver education plays a huge role in preventing these kinds of accidents because most of the time drivers are actually unaware that they are committing an unsafe act until they are made aware of it.
While there are a number of definitive guides that discuss in detail the safety guidelines drivers have to follow when sharing the road with a truck, most of them get overlooked since people are generally disinterested in reading about it, which is why Boulder injury lawyer Todd Tenge and his team came up with an infographic called “How To Avoid Truck Accidents: A Visual Guide on Truck Safety”. The infographic condenses all the necessary information and precautions that all drivers need to observe to avoid truck accidents in a short and straightforward visual guide that readers can easily understand.
This post was created by Tenge Law Firm in Colorado. To learn more about this firm, visit www.tengelaw.com.