Driving down the highway with a Semi Truck or large vehicle beside you can be intimidating. Most of the time I just want to get by and find myself gripping the steering wheel and holding my breath until I have passed them. Just the other day I noticed a sign on a big semi that said if your driving next to me and can see this sign, I cannot see you. Blind spots are common with such vehicles and there are limitations for the driver of that big truck they cannot control.
Being extra cautious when driving next to or around large vehicles like a semi truck is the smart thing to do.
Tips to keeping you safe:
Get out of the blind spots.
Blind spots on most big trucks are to the right and rear of the truck. There are also blind spots on the right front corner and mid-left side.Just like the sign I saw, if you cannot see the truck driver in the truck’s mirror, then the truck driver cannot see you or your vehicle. Riding along in a truck’s blind spot could easily cause an accident, with your car getting the majority of the damage. Safest thing for you is to pass the truck and keep going.
Give them their space.
Never cut in front of a large vehicle. First they cannot react in time to change lanes or get our of your way with all the weight they are carrying. If you have to go around a truck or in front of it use your signals and make sure you can see the front of the truck well behind you when looking in your review mirror before you do.
Don’t slam on the Brakes in front of a large vehicle.
It’s bad enough if you have to slam on your brakes in front of another car and getting rear ended, but just like changing lanes for a semi, this does not happen on a dime. A truck driver needs more time to react then a small vehicle and getting rear ended by such a large truck could be fatal.
No sneaking past them.
If they are trying to make a turn and your too close get out of the way. Truck drivers have to make wide turns with such large trucks or buses, your best bet is too keep an eye out if they are coming in your direction, check your review mirror in case you have to back up or simply pull over and let them pass. With right hand turns, the driver has to swing to the left before they can go into a right turn, if at this point you want to quickly get past, you will be putting you and your vehicle at risk, because you have entered into the blind zone. The driver will not be able to see a car that is directly behind them or beside them in their blind spots.
Take the time to take extra care for you and your passengers while on the road with large trucks or buses. They are bigger then you and you will most likely to be the injured party or worse a fatality.
Photo Courtesy of Gualberto107 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net