From major blind spots to oversized loads, large commercial trucks can pose a big risk to much smaller vehicles.
An 18-wheeler may weigh as much as 20 to 30 times more than the average passenger car, which means longer breaking times, a greater chance of vehicle overturn and more risk when drivers attempt to turn or pass.
Even careful motorists may find themselves in danger, making it essential to review basic safety tips to avoid a potentially deadly collision.
1. Big rigs have big blind spots
Semi-trailer trucks have blind spots behind, in front and along the sides of the vehicle. A truck driver’s blind spots may extend up to 200 feet behind the trailer, 20 feet in front of the tractor and anywhere directly alongside the trailer.
2. Large trucks can create wind gusts
The sheer size of large commercial vehicles may also lead to intense gusts of wind along the sides, especially when moving at higher speeds. Drivers in smaller cars should make sure to grip the steering wheel tightly when passing to avoid issues with air turbulence.
3. 18-wheelers take longer to start and stop
Because commercial trucks are so long and so heavy, it may take much longer for them to accelerate, brake and perform passing maneuvers.
Drivers may want to give big trucks extra space when following. Additionally, motorists passing in front of a truck may want to wait until both headlights are visible in the rearview mirror before moving into the lane.
Whether due to maintenance issues, intense shipping schedules or a driver’s error, the results of a collision between a large truck and a passenger vehicle may easily prove deadly. Motorists should know that needed compensation may be available for both auto injury sufferers and their families.