Driving alongside big rigs and trucks is always a dangerous encounter. Truck accidents involving other passenger vehicles can result in significant damage and serious injuries. There may be times when a commercial truck driver may not be at their sharpest. Therefore, you must always remain extra cautious when sharing the road with a semi truck driver to help reduce the risks of a commercial truck accident.
Whether you frequently commute on a highway or you’re a new driver, you need to ensure that you are always staying safe from those big, heavily loaded trucks and rigs. To learn more about how to ensure your safety and other passenger vehicle drivers near these tractor trailers and oversized commercial vehicles, here are six safety tips for truck accident prevention to follow as provided by our truck accident lawyer.
Do you know that even when you look over your shoulder or check your side and rear view mirror, there are still some blind spots that you cannot view? This means if a vehicle is in those areas of impairment, you will be less likely to see them.
These blind spots are usually when other vehicles are driving too close on either side of the rear of your car. So, if you suddenly change lanes, the chances of a collision with the front are imminent.
However, the risk is even higher with big trucks and rigs because they have larger blind spots than regular vehicles. Therefore, you must avoid driving in a truck’s blind spot. Either move 20 feet in front of the big rig or slow down until the driver sees you in one of the side mirrors. You must maintain at least 30 feet distance when driving behind a large truck.
Always pass a truck or 18-wheeler with utmost precaution. Remember, these large trucks are not good at stopping as quickly as your smaller and less heavy vehicle. Truck drivers need ample time to react, adjust the speed, and brake accordingly.
Therefore, always approach a large truck from the left side because you will be easily visible to the driver. Keep your speed consistent while passing, and always give a clear signal with your blinkers or hand motions to indicate your next move in advance. If a truck passes you, slow and keep to the right side.
Another important thing to remember is to ensure that you can see the truck in your rearview at a safe distance before moving into the lane right in front of the truck.
If you wish to change lanes or make a turn near a commercial truck, you must trigger your signal a little bit earlier than you usually would. This will give the truck driver enough time to respond and adjust their speed before making their next move.
If you are driving behind a commercial truck or big rig, you must maintain a minimum of 4-second driving distance between the truck and your vehicle. This is critical because if the truck driver has to make an emergency stop and you are not at a safe distance, your car will be pushed underneath the trailer.
Maintaining a safe distance also gives you time to respond to rollovers and tire blowouts. If you are stuck in traffic behind a truck, always maintain a distance just in case the truck begins to roll backward.
Commercial trucks take more room to make a turn. Therefore, you must never attempt to pass a truck giving a turn signal. Additionally, you must not drive between the curb and the truck. When you stop at an intersection, always make sure that your car is behind the line, as trucks will need that space to make a turn.
Also, if a truck is turning out of a parking lot, ensure you leave enough room in front of your vehicle for their tractor-trailer to complete its turn. Regardless of whether the trucker is turning left or right out of the lot, they will require much room to maneuver properly.
Accidents are inevitable. Therefore, do not forget to wear a seatbelt in any case. There is always a chance of pile-on accidents on the road with heavy rigs and commercial trucks on route. A seat belt will help keep you safer during a collision and prevent you from being jolted forward. In addition, make sure the seatbelt is adjusted at the appropriate length to accommodate your height.
Do not lose your concentration. Keep your focus on the road and beware of your surroundings because your distraction can put you and others on the road in danger. Adjusting the radio, eating while behind the wheel, talking on the phone, or doing any other distracting activities increases your chances of getting into an accident. In short, avoid any activity that will force you to take your eyes off the road.
If you notice that a truck driving near you keeps making tops or is swerving, keep your distance. Switch lanes as far from the trucker as possible, or take the nearest exit if you are on the freeway, like the I-405 Freeway, which is already a dangerous highway.
If necessary, you can also report the truck to CHP (California Highway Patrol) in Newport Beach. An inattentive driver in such a large truck is a danger to everyone, and you want to prevent a catastrophic accident from occurring.
Following the above-mentioned tips can help truckers and other drivers on the road avoid serious truck crashes. However, if you have been in a truck accident in Newport Beach, CA, seeking help from a truck accident lawyer is the best way forward. An attorney with expertise in truck accident cases will help you receive the maximum compensation claim that you deserve.