Safety Tips When Driving Near Large Trucks
Sharing the road with big trucks is a fact of life. Whether you’re driving on I-95, I-295, I-10 or one of the other countless highways and roadways in the Jacksonville area, you’re going to encounter 18-wheelers.
Big rigs can be intimidating because of their size and noise alone. And they do pose a danger, largely due to the vulnerability of smaller vehicles. According to the Highway Loss Data Institute at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 66 percent of the people who died in big truck accidents in 2016 were occupants of passenger vehicles, an increase of 27 percent from 2009.
Strategies for driving near large trucks
Fortunately, you can employ strategies to enhance the safety of yourself and your passengers:
- Avoid blind spots. You increase the danger to yourself when a trucker can’t see your vehicle. There are blind spots on both sides of a big truck as well as at the front and back.
- Pass promptly. When you need to pass a truck, you should be far enough back to see the driver in the mirror. When passing, do not linger in the trucker’s blind spot.
- Stay at a safe distance. Do not drive alongside or closely behind trucks. If the truck blows a tire or makes an unexpected move, you will be in danger.
- Give trucks the time and room to stop. A fully loaded truck traveling 65 miles per hour needs almost 200 yards to stop – and that’s under ideal conditions.
- Be aware. We hear about the dangers of “distracted driving” every day. Because of the mismatch between your 3,000 to 4,000-pound car and a fully loaded 80,000-pound big rig, paying attention to the road is even more important.
No matter how safely you drive, though, you can still be the victim of an accident involving a big truck. Maybe the trucker is at fault, not driving safely or driving while fatigued. Maybe another motorist caused the accident and you are guilty of nothing more than being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Truck accidents are often fatal and always serious.
A tractor-trailer accident can alter your life forever. You may be facing months of physical rehabilitation from horrific injuries. You may be out of work and dealing with mountains of medical bills. Even worse, your family may have suffered the tragic loss of a loved one.
The trucking company, its lawyers and its insurers often have immediate response teams of experienced lawyers, investigators and experts on standby 24 hours a day to protect the company’s interests after a crash. Often these teams arrive at the scene of a crash and begin investigating before the victim even arrives at the hospital. Victims of truck crashes need a truck accident injury law firm with the experience and resources to take on these insurance companies and their massive legal teams. We’ll gather the evidence and demonstrate to a jury what really happened in the crash.
We have successfully handled many tractor-trailer accident claims, including a $9.65 million recovery for a fatal crash. Our team is standing by to aggressively protect your rights while treating you with the respect that you deserve. Take the first step toward securing your future by filling out our online contact form to schedule a free case evaluation.