One of the scariest things as a driver on the road is to be driving next to a large 18-wheeler. Due to their size, they are known to drift in and out of lanes often which means you need to be alert and ready.
To make it less scary and a lot easier for you as a driver, there are a few things you can do when it comes to sharing the road with these larger trucks.
Driving Around Big Rigs
Patience and awareness are the two main elements needed for safe driving. This is especially true when it comes to driving in the presence of 18-wheelers and other large trucks.
Never Take Chances
When driving alongside these trucks, you do not want to take any chances. If you see that the truck is about to move into your lane, do not speed up. Slow down and let them over. A truck is not capable of stopping as quickly as other vehicles, so if you were to speed up and cut in front of them, and then you hit your brakes, they might collide with you.
Pass with Caution
When it comes time to pass an 18-wheeler, make sure to allow a lot more space than you typically would when you are just passing a car. Always make sure that you can see the truck clearly in your rearview mirror and don’t put the truck driver in a position that would compromise them. Make sure they see that you are there before you pass.
Watch for Turns
It is never good to assume that the truck driver can actually see you. When turning, a truck driver will need to turn wide to compensate for the size of their truck and trailer. If you see a truck trying to turn, assume they don’t see you and provide them with ample room to complete their turn. Do not nestle yourself alongside them, do not try to pass while they are turning and do not try to squeeze in behind them or next to them.
Why is it a Challenge?
Even though truck drivers are skilled and trained, it can still be challenging to drive alongside them. 18-wheelers come with their own set of problems that make them risky on the road. They are much heavier and larger than typical vehicles, there is always the risk of underride and override depending on who hits who, and a much longer stopping distance is needed for trucks because it takes longer to stop due to all the weight.
When sharing the road with large trucks, the best thing you can do as a driver is to stay alert and be patient. Assess the risk when you try to pass a truck and pay attention to the other drivers and road conditions to help ensure safe travels.
However, even if you perform your due diligence, accidents do still happen. If you have been involved in a trucking accident and feel you are entitled to compensation for the damages sustained, do not hesitate to contact an attorney to help you with the process and file your personal injury claim.