10 Safety Tips to Follow When Driving Behind a Truck

Driving on highways is different from diving on a typical country road. Several additional parameters come into existence when you are driving a vehicle on roadways. One of the biggest concerns while driving on a highway is trucks!

In the United States of America, the majority of road accidents occur due to bumping into trucks or semi-trailers. Houston truck accident Lawyer has been constantly worried about the increasing number of truck accidents and the damage they cause, both physically and mentally.

So, to ensure that you and your beloved family are safe when they are on highways, we have mentioned a couple of safety measures to take care of when driving behind a truck or on a highway.

Safety Measure to follow when you are driving on Highways

Source: defensivedriving.com

As a responsible citizen, you must follow all the traffic norms and abide by them. But adding a couple more in your rule book would help you save your lives. Below are some essential safety rules you added to your safe list.

1. Avoid getting in the blind spot

Avoid the blind zones of semi-trucks whenever feasible. For semi-trucks, there are four no-zone areas. Which are:

  • Along the driver’s side and beneath the driver’s window
  • Along the truck’s passenger side and stretching backward
  • The truck is around 20 feet in front of you.
  • 30 feet or so are usually behind the tractor-trailer.

Driving in a truck’s blind area increases your risk of being in an accident because the driver cannot see you. If you discover yourself in a blind spot while driving, adjust your speed or decelerate to get out of the danger zone as soon as you can.

2. Maintain a safe distance

When driving close to a truck, always leave enough space between your car and the tractor-trailer. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration advises leaving one second between you and the vehicle for every 10 feet of its length.

Given that the typical semi-truck is 72 feet long, you should allow at least 7 seconds between your vehicle and the truck when following. You should allow an extra second if your speed is over 40 miles per hour. If the semi experiences a problem, such as drifting, a tire blowout, or a load tipping, give yourself adequate time to respond and move out of the way.

3. Be patient

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Several cases have been flagged due to car drivers being hasty when overtaking trucks due to traffic. Before you overtake a truck or any other vehicle, ensure that your region of overtaking is transparent and there is no other vehicle in its proximity. It is always better to jump your lane safely where no trucks are passing by, and then overtake when you have a clear shot. Speeding and rushing would only cause you harm and nothing else!

There are several other safety conditions to consider on highways, like weather conditions, car maintenance, road condition, etc. It is always better to drive safely and carefully, or you might have to endure tremendous pain if anything goes wrong. However, truck accident attorneys will have your back for dealing with insurance companies, not when you suffer.

4. Driving Sensibly

Driving safely is one of the best methods to reduce your risk of being involved in a semi-truck collision. Be sure to follow these guidelines for safe driving:

  • Pay constant attention to the road.
  • Do not text and drive.
  • Avoid driving in the snow, rain, or ice.
  • Take it slow
  • Never operate a vehicle while intoxicated by alcohol or drugs.

5. Pass safely at all times

Moving past a semi-truck safely is required. Consider pursuing the truck from the left, so the driver can see you before you pass. Additionally, be sure to indicate before passing and maintain a constant speed. Before reentering the lane in front of them, drivers should always check their rearview mirror to ensure the truck is a good distance behind.

6. Hold onto Your Pace

Source: autocar.co.uk

You can reduce your risk of being involved in a truck collision by avoiding abrupt speed changes. When you approach a semi at a constant speed, the driver will have a better sense of where your car will be about theirs. This lets them consider your position while planning their turn or lane change.

7. Give yourself extra time

Semi-trucks need extra room, but you should also give them more time. Semi-trucks are large and heavy, making it difficult for them to maneuver rapidly. Be patient if you are traveling close to a semi-truck that is turning, changing lanes, or backing out of a parking lot.

Waiting is preferable to entering the semi-blind truck’s spot and running the chance of getting hurt while the semi-truck is making its maneuver, which may take several minutes.

8. Acquire More Distance After

Always maintain a safe distance when following a large rig or semi-truck. Even when driving slowly, allow yourself 4 to 5 seconds of response time before the semi. If you have to stop unexpectedly, this helps to avoid an accident. Additionally, it lessens the potential harm a truck sliding backward can inflict.

9. Prepare for wide turns

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Semi-trucks can make incredibly wide turns, unlike smaller passenger cars. For instance, a semi may have to use the left-hand lane if they need to make a right turn. If you do not prepare for their broad turn, the semi may cut you off or, worse yet, trap you below.

Always be aware of broad curves and maintain a safe distance because undercarriage crashes are among the deadliest semi-truck collisions.

10. Avoid tailgating

You should never drive too closely behind a semi-truck. You may not have sufficient time to respond in time to avoid a collision if the vehicle suddenly stops. Moreover, if you are too close for the truck driver to see you, he or she might react to emergencies otherwise than if they were aware of your presence.

Even when the semi-truck travels slower than the posted speed limit or should be in the right lane, these are not good reasons to put yourself in danger. Passing safely and legally requires maintaining composure, being patient, and adhering to traffic laws.