Tips for Driving Safely Around a Tractor Trailer

Truck Accident Lawyer

Driving around tractor trailers can be nerve wracking and even a bit frustrating to say the least. In some cases, drivers may even lose sight of the importance of practicing safe driving when sharing the road with tractor trailers. A lawyer has provided you with the following tips for handling motor vehicles around tractor trailers:

Tip #1 Avoid Blind Spots

Tractor trailers come equipped with a significant number of blind spots. Because of this, truck drivers may make decisions to move the truck without having awareness that you may be in the way. Having an awareness of a tractor trailer’s blind spots can help drivers avoid the likelihood of an accident. When driving near a truck, always try to stay out of their blind spots. A good standard to keep in mind is that if you are unable to see the truck’s mirrors, they are likely unable to see you. Tips for avoiding blind spots include:

  • Stay 30 feet away from the rear of a truck
  • Try to pass on the left side whenever possible
  • Keep away from the truck’s side mirrors

Tip #2 Do Not Brake Suddenly

Whenever possible, try not to slam on your brakes in front of a tractor trailer. In some cases, braking in front of a tractor trailer may be necessary. However, it’s important to try to move out of the way should this occur. This could provide truck driver with the ability to stop the truck in time.

Tip #3 Move Fast When Passing

Because of the number of blind spots a tractor trailer may have, taking too long to pass a large truck can impact their ability to see you. Even though it may seem apparent that you are next to them, they may not be able to. If they are unable to see you in the lane next to them, they could suddenly change lanes. Should this occur, a collision with a tractor trailer could be imminent.

Tip #4 Do Not Pull Too Closely in Front of Them

Pulling in front of a truck can be dangerous for a variety of reasons. This is often a common behavior many drivers engage in. What many do not realize is how quickly this could cause a collision. Trucks do not have the ability to stop such an expansive truck so quickly, which could result in a driver being hit from behind.

Tip #5 Keep Your Distance

Following too closely behind a tractor trailer can be dangerous, especially when faced with a potential hazard. Following too closely inhibit the truck driver’s ability to see you. Additionally,  it can also reduce your ability to respond in time should a tractor trailer make an unexpected maneuver. Because trucks sit higher off the road, should you rear end a truck, the vehicle can be caught underneath the tractor trailer.  

Tip #6 Pay Attention

When driving behind the wheel of a car, it’s always important to pay attention to your surroundings. However, when sharing the road with tractor trailers, it’s especially important to pay close attention, carefully utilizing defensive driving skills. Having the ability to react when faced with a potential hazard at the hands of a tractor trailer driver can potentially help driver’s protect themselves when faced with a collision.

When approaching a tractor trailer, it’s important to always proceed with caution. While many tractor trailers have the ability to share the road with other drivers, the unexpected can occur. Sometimes, even the most responsible drivers stand to experience tractor trailer accidents. Contact a truck accident lawyer Silver Spring, MD offers today to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Thank you to our friends and contributors at Cohen & Cohen, P.C. for their insight into trucking accidents and tips for driving safely around trucks.