This article isn’t for truck drivers, this one is for the general public of motorists that take to the roads ways daily and create some pretty dangerous driving conditions for themselves and others on the road. If you have a driver’s license, you should read this post and share it with others, so that they too can become better, safer drivers.
Every trucker has a pile of stories about the dangerous driving situations they are put in on a daily basis because passenger vehicles A.K.A. 4-wheelers or the general driving population, just don’t know how to drive safely around big trucks.
Len Dubois Trucking has dedicated itself to training and education, to putting the safest drivers out on the road in our trucks. But, the safety of our team can only go as far as the safety of the drivers around them on the roadways. We’ve put together some tips to help everyone become safer together.
Passing a Semi on the Right is Risky
A semi truck and trailer has many blind spots but the right side is the worst. The right side of a semi truck is referred to as the “blind side” and for good reason too – most objects on the right side of a truck cannot be seen by the driver. Most motorists are guilty of passing a semi on the right side, mainly because the risk involved is simply unknown.
If a truck is in the left lane, it’s probably for a good reason. Please be patient and give the trucker the space they need to drive safely instead of trying to pass them on the right. When it is safe to do so, the trucker will move back into the right lane, and everyone can carry on about their day.
Tailgating a Truck Can and Has led to Decapitation
Driving too closely behind a semi-truck presents two problems. One, the driver can’t see you and two, your view of the roadway ahead is greatly reduced. If the truck driver has to make an emergency stop, your ability to stop safely is greatly reduced. There is absolutely no way for truck drivers to see behind their trailer. They have no back window – no rear-view mirror – and it is completely up to you to keep a safe following distance when traveling behind a semi.
Please Pass or Get behind
This is a big one! Every professional will tell you to never hang out beside a big truck. Often, on the open highway, a vehicle will get beside us and match our speed and stay beside the trailer or just off the rear corner. We can only assume they had thoughts of overtaking us then got a little unnerved by the size of the vehicle, the wind coming off the big truck, or the trailer movement (the rear of the trailers sometimes drift side to side in the lane).
Riding beside us or just off our corner is a dangerous place to sit at highway speeds. Big trucks have big blind spots. It also prevents us from overtaking a slower vehicle since we can’t get over to the passing lane.
You’re also cutting off a possible escape route if an emergency situation occurs. Pro drivers are aware of what’s happening around their vehicles. If there’s an emergency situation, such as a sudden accident – we may need to take evasive action to avoid a collision. Sitting beside us may take away an option.
Please remember that when you’re driving down the road you’re, not in a vacuum – you’re in a flow of traffic. Co-operation and consideration for other vehicles on the road is essential for safety.