The sight of a big rig looming up in the next lane can make most drivers nervous. There are several good reasons for this reaction. When trucks get into accidents, the fatality and serious injury rates tend to shoot up.
The exceptional size and weight of a typical commercial truck can seriously increase the gravity of any damage. These attributes also cause trucks to present some unique challenges for other drivers on the road. Learning how to drive safely along with the many semi-trailers traveling North Carolina’s interstate highway can help you reduce the risk of getting into an accident.
Avoid blind zones
Because of their bulk and height, trucks have immense blind zones – portions the truck’s driver cannot see at all. These zones are located in front of, behind and along the sides of the truck. Take a look at the truck’s side mirror – can you see the driver? If not, chances are he or she cannot see you, either. Move away from these zones as soon as you can.
Do not cut in front
You should not cut in front of any vehicle, as that is both dangerous and impolite. However, cutting in front of a truck carries an even greater risk of causing a crash. Most drivers who see a vehicle approaching quickly from the side will make an effort to brake. A truck driver is less likely to succeed in time, as the mass of the truck can slow stopping time by as much as 40 percent.
Keep your distance
Likewise, tailgating, which is never great, becomes extremely hazardous when you do it to a truck. Remember that, due to its blind zone, the driver may not even know you are following. If the truck slows or stops, or another car hits you from behind, you run the risk of sliding underneath it.
Even drivers who take all possible precautions can end up in a car wreck. If you are the victim of a truck accident, consult an experienced attorney as soon as possible to learn about available options in your case.