Any accident can have devastating consequences, but those from a truck collision can be even more so. The size, power, and weight of a truck can result in life-threatening and life-changing injuries, not to mention many preventable deaths.
Our truck accident lawyers in Dallas, Texas are well versed in establishing cases for truck accident victims. However, if you can prevent an accident in the first place, you can be far better off. Here are some of the best ways to avoid being in a truck accident.
1. Avoid Blind Spots
Commercial trucks may be larger, but that doesn’t mean their view is any better than that of a passenger car. In fact, they can have many more blind spots than the average vehicle. As a rule, if you can’t see the driver in the side mirrors of the truck, then they are unlikely to see you.
Some of the more common blind spots of a truck are 20 feet in front of it and 30 feet behind it. Some truck drivers may also not be able to see vehicles in the lane beside the driver to around half of the length of their trailer. It’s not uncommon for you to also be invisible to a truck if you are in the first or second lane to the right side of the truck.
If you get the opportunity, talk to a truck driver. Find out straight from the horse’s mouth what they can and can’t see. You can then take much more care when sharing the road with a truck.
2. Be Clear with Signaling
Truck drivers can not stop as quickly as cars can. Therefore, it’s worth not only signaling with plenty of time to spare but being transparent with your signaling, as well. The more time you give before changing lanes or passing, the more time you provide the truck driver to react.
3. Be Careful When Passing
Passing a commercial truck can take a bit more care and planning than passing another car. Their reaction times are a lot slower, and they are a larger profile vehicle on the road.
Avoid passing trucks on hills – whether you’re going up one or down one. The speed of a truck can decrease or increase naturally. If you intend to pass a truck, do so on the left where the driver can see you. Use your signals and maintain your speed.
Then, when the time comes to merge back into the lane, wait until you can see the driver in your rear-view mirror clearly. If a truck is passing you, stay on the right, slow down, and give them plenty of room.
4. Keep Your Distance
Trucks can be affected by high winds and tire blowouts. They can also be required to brake suddenly. In all of these situations, other road users can be at risk. Therefore, you may be able to avoid being in a truck accident by keeping your distance.
Maintain a following distance of at least four seconds, while also staying out of their blind spots. Don’t attempt to pass a truck that is turning right. If a truck is turning, give them plenty of space. They may need to take up more than one lane to complete the turn. Attorneys in our firm know that while it may not be ideal, it’s best be patient and allow the semi truck time.
5. Avoid Distractions
Distractions are a common cause of any accident, but the results can be even more deadly when you’re faced with a truck collision. Always keep your eyes on the road. Don’t eat while driving, or use your cellphone.
6. Be Careful When Merging
Always take care when merging in front of or behind a truck. Slow down if a truck is passing you, as doing so will decrease the time they take to pass. Always allow plenty of room for merging.
Is it Time to Call a Truck Accident Attorney?
Accidents happen. Even if you have always been the most careful driver, you may not always be able to stop them from happening. If you have been involved in a collision with a commercial truck, act fast and contact us today. Now could be the best time to call J. Alexander Law Firm to assist you through the trying times after an accident with a semi truck.