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How to stay safe when driving around trucks
Timothy Shay

A serious motor vehicle accident can have life-long consequences. No matter how cautious you are on the road, you can’t always expect other drivers to be just as cautious.

And when it comes to severe accidents, a collision with a truck can be one of the absolute worst. Since trucks are much larger, they can be more dangerous in an accident, causing catastrophic injuries or death. In 2017, truck accidents caused over 4,761 fatalities. Of those deaths, 72% were the occupants of passenger vehicles.

It’s crucial to remember these safety tips to protect yourself from a terrible truck accident:

  • Don’t cut in front of a truck. Larger vehicles like a truck require more time to slow down and stop. If you cut off a truck too closely, they might not have enough time to brake to avoid a collision. It’s best to give yourself plenty of room before you try to switch lanes.
  • Don’t drive in the blind spots. Since trucks are much larger than conventional vehicles, they also have much larger blind spots. These areas include the sides and back of the truck. It’s important not to drive too close behind a truck or to stick alongside them as the truck driver will not know you are there, which may result in a collision when trying to merge or brake.
  • Don’t tailgate. As stated, the back of the truck is a significant blind spot. If you’re tailgating behind a truck, the driver won’t realize you are there if they need to make an abrupt stop, causing you to drive right into them. Plus, since trucks are higher from the ground, if you do crash into the truck from behind, your car may become caught underneath.
  • Wait before you turn. Trucks need more space to turn because of their size. Some drivers will even make a turn from a middle lane to allow for that extra room. If you’re following behind a truck, it’s best to give them the chance to complete their turn before following.
  • Stay patient. Driving aggressively around trucks can increase your risk of an accident. Instead, stay alert and stay patient. Give yourself plenty of space around trucks and pass them carefully.

Exercising extreme caution around large trucks is the best way to ensure your safety. Familiarize yourself with these safety measures so the next time you are on the road, you will know how to stay protected.