If you frequently drive in or around Springfield, you undoubtedly see dozens of commercial vehicles. After all, I-72 and I-55 offer efficient ways for truckers to deliver goods to consumers across the country. Because of driver blind spots, you must exercise additional caution when driving near a tractor-trailer or passing one.
When you climb behind the wheel of your car, you probably know the spaces around your vehicle you simply cannot see. While your side mirrors and backup camera help, you likely glance over your shoulder before changing lanes or reversing to ensure you do not have a collision. Blind spots on commercial vehicles are significantly larger than they are on your car.
A truck’s no zones
Driving instructors often refer to a truckdriver’s blind spots as the vehicle’s no zones, as driving in these areas can be unsafe. On tractor-trailers, there are four no zones:
- 20 feet in front of the truck’s cab
- 30 feet behind the truck’s trailer
- Immediately under the cab’s mirror on the truck’s left side
- Immediately under the cab’s mirror and 15 feet outward on the truck’s right side
A strategy for passing safely
Because of the sheer size and weight of commercial vehicles, a collision with one may leave you with serious and costly injuries. Consequently, you must take steps to avoid trucker blind spots. First, when traveling at fast speeds, you should not drive in the no zones in front or behind the truck.
If you need to overtake a tractor-trailer, you should signal before your vehicle is within 30 feet of the truck’s trailer. Then, you should change lanes and pass as quickly as possible without violating posted speed limits.
Finally, wait until your vehicle is more than 20 feet in front of the truck to signal and return to your driving lane.