Being aware of truck blind spots can help you avoid accidents with big rigs.
If you drive a regular car, truck, or SUV, one of your worst fears may be getting into a wreck with a semi-truck, bus, or other large vehicle. It is a realistic fear, given that large trucks and buses are involved in more than 4,000 fatal crashes in the United States each year. In 2015 alone, 4,311 fatal crashes involved commercial vehicles, which was an 8% increase from 2014. Semi-trucks and big rigs are particularly dangerous because of their heaviness and their large blind spots, which can make it more likely for them to be in accidents, especially with smaller passenger vehicles.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration calls these blind spots “No Zones,” and for good reason: they are the areas where tractor trailers have poor visibility. Knowing where these “no zones” are is the first step in avoiding them. Drivers of commercial vehicles have limited visibility due to large blind spots around the front, back, and sides of their vehicles. Staying out of these “no zones” as much as you can can help you avoid crashes involving tractor trailers, other trucks, and buses. For tractor trailers, the biggest blind spot is on the right side of the vehicle. The no zone is located primarily on the right side, and is bigger and more difficult to avoid.
One of the most dangerous road conditions involving truck blind spots is when you want to pass a truck or when a truck driver passes your vehicle. Doing so makes it necessary for your car to be in the blind spot at some point, which makes it all the more important for you to use extra caution when passing or being passed to stay safe.
Similarly, when a truck driver is turning, backing up, or changing lanes, blind spots or “no zones” can become even more dangerous. Be sure to use extra caution when you are driving around commercial trucks that are turning or changing lanes. This will help you avoid a crash with a big rig as they turn.
Finally, never tailgate or drive too close to a tractor trailer. Semi trucks and big rigs generally do not have a functioning inside rear-view mirror, so their drivers can only see you in their side view mirrors. Truck drivers need a longer following distance — or a greater space between other vehicles and your car — so that they can see you. If you cannot see a truck driver in their mirror, then they can likely not see you.
Following these tips can help you avoid a truck accident, but it cannot prevent all collisions with tractor trailers. If you or someone you love has been hurt in a truck accident, the experienced truck accident lawyers of the Law Offices of Larry H. Parker can help. We offer free initial consultations, where we will explain your legal rights and options. We have a 95% success rate and have recovered more than $2 billion dollars on behalf of over 100,000 clients. Contact our office today at 800-333-0000 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about how we can help you if you have been hurt in a truck accident.