Driving near other vehicles can be stressful. While most of the time, you can make your way through busy roadways without incident, other drivers can add to the unpredictability of driving.
It can be even more nerve-wracking to drive near large commercial trucks. Although commercial truck drivers tend to have more training, small driving mistakes come with big consequences.
Here’s what you should know about safer driving around semis.
Know when they can see you (and when they can’t)
One of the most important parts of avoiding a crash with a large truck is making sure the other driver can see you. Large trucks have equally large blind spots, so you can easily end up in an area where you are not visible.
The areas along the sides and directly behind the truck are low-visibility areas. Sometimes these spots are unavoidable, especially in heavy traffic.
You can help truck drivers see you by limiting your time in these danger zones. A good rule of thumb is that if you cannot see the truck’s mirrors, the driver cannot see you.
No sudden stops
Stopping is an essential tool on the road. A simple stop can be the difference between a fatal collision and a near-miss. For large trucks, however, stopping is not always simple.
When trucks carry large, heavy loads, drivers need more time to stop. While your smaller vehicle can stop quickly, a large truck may over 500 feet to stop. To accommodate for the longer stop time, you should leave plenty of space when merging in front of a large truck and avoiding quick stops when a large truck is behind you.