Best Safety Practices for Driving Near Trucks
In the event of a collision, large semi-trucks pose an even greater risk to on the road than a regular, smaller sized car. In fact, commercial vehicles can weigh up to a staggering 80,000 pounds. That is 75,000 pounds heavier than a regular sedan, which typically weighs in at only 5,000 pounds. Additionally, the dimensions of a semi-truck are approximately 70-80 feet in length and 14 feet in width, with almost a 25 feet wheelbase. Thus, the driver of a vehicle of this magnitude is in control of thousands of pounds of machinery moving at highway speeds. If you have been involved in a semi-truck-related crash and you live in San Antonio or the surrounding area, the attorneys at Carabin & Shaw are here for you.
The fatality rate of victims involved in commercial-truck-related crashes is increasing with every year. In fact, the figures for commercial collision deaths are already almost as high as passenger vehicle crash rates. Unfortunately, manufacturers of heavy trucks do not typically engineer or test their vehicles for proper crash safety. As a result, heavy trucks actually provide minimal protection to truck occupants or drivers and passengers in its proximity.
The best safety practices for driving near trucks must be learned by all drivers, including non-commercial motorists in San Antonio. One of our San Antonio truck driver accident lawyers is standing by to help you obtain the compensation you deserve. At Carabin & Shaw, our attorneys will stop at nothing to fight for the compensation to which you are entitled in your quest to reclaim your life after the incident.
Despite this, there are some preliminary steps you can take to help avoid collisions and other mishaps related to sharing the road with big rigs. A few of the best safety practices for driving near trucks that you should always adhere to when driving in San Antonio or anywhere else include:
- Maintain proper following distance at all times.
- Do not make any sudden maneuvers.
- When possible, always avoid passing on the right side of a commercial truck.
- Inversely, always try to use the left-hand lane to pass big rigs and/or change lanes when you are adjacent to a truck of this size.
- Stay out of the truck’s blind spots. Commercial trucks have a dangerous amount of blind spots, even with every mirror and visibility tool at the driver’s disposal. The fact of the matter is, operators of 18-wheelers have so many sectors to watch, it is all too easy to slip into one of these no-zones without notice.
- Avoid and yield to commercial trucks executing any lateral turns. These maneuvers usually take extra time and space for a vehicle of such large proportions. The best thing you can do to help avoid any unwanted hazards or consequences, is to yield to these larger vehicles and allow them an extra buffer space to operate safely.
- Drive defensively and remain vigilant. This includes taking all impending weather conditions into consideration as you navigate in and out of adjacent lanes.
Even if all surrounding drivers use appropriate caution while sharing the road with commercial trucks, sometimes the operator of commercial trucks may still put themselves or other drivers in their periphery in danger. Some common dangers for surrounding motorists that stem from commercial truckers’ or their companies’ negligence include:
- Lack of training/negligence during the hiring process
- Overloaded/overstuffed trucks
- Brake/mechanical failure/defect
- Poor/dangerous driving conditions
- Driver inexperience
- Driver fatigue
- Speeding/otherwise careless driving
- Failure to yield right of way
- Aggressive driving behavior
- Driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol
In these instances, the more you know about the best safety practices for driving near trucks, the better chance you have of preventing an accident and avoiding any of these hazards to begin with. If you or someone you care about has been affected by an accident involving a commercial truck, contact a San Antonio 18-wheeler accident injury lawyer from Carabin & Shaw today. One of our experienced lawyers in the San Antonio area want to help make you aware of your options and maximize your chance of obtaining maximum compensation for your losses.
Call us at 210.222.2288 or toll-free at 1.800.682.1260 to schedule your free case consultation with an attorney today.