Learning how to share the road with a variety of vehicles — small and large — might not be something you ever covered through driver’s education or behind the wheel courses. But becoming familiar with the driving patterns of some of the largest commercial vehicles that cruise alongside you could save your life.
Specifically, here are three ways to increase caution near truck drivers:
1.Manage your distractions
Giving driving your full attention is always safer than multitasking. This means keeping your cell phone far out of reach and not letting conversations in the car or your own thoughts consume you. It’s especially important to stay alert when you are driving near vehicles that are a lot larger than you, because statistics show that majority of the people who die in truck accidents aren’t the ones driving the truck.
2.Pass with blind spots in mind
It’s vital to keep in mind the length and distance of a truck driver’s blind spots when you drive near them. This means you should never try to cut in front of a truck without leaving a large distance between the front of the truck and the back of your car. You’ll also be safest when passing a truck on the left side where the driver sits and can see you better.
3.Maintain a reasonable distance
Overall, your safest bet is to give a truck space when you come across them on highways or other roadways. This is because their heavy loads cause their stopping distance to be a lot longer than an average car. So, you won’t want to be directly in front of a truck in case they need to make a sudden stop. You’ll also want to give a truck the space they need to make their wide turns or back up to complete their deliveries.
Even if a truck driver doesn’t have the right of way or you think you have enough leeway to pass them, it’s best to stay on the safe side instead of taking risks.