Certain things that you notice near you in traffic may cause a tense, adverse reaction. Almost everyone starts to panic when they see the flashing blue and red lights of a police vehicle behind them.
While you may not feel quite as anxious when you pull up behind a semitruck or notice one next to you in heavy traffic, they are a more immediate threat to your personal safety. Police officers are only there to write tickets and enforce the traffic laws for everyone’s while being. Those semitrucks, while crucial for the modern economy, are a major source of risk for you and other drivers on the road.
How can you minimize your chances of getting into a crash with a commercial truck?
Respect their large blind spots
A commercial truck is several times taller, longer and heavier than a passenger vehicle. Even when a commercial driver or their employer installs extra side-view mirrors around the cab, there will inevitably still be areas that the commercial driver cannot see.
Directly behind the trailer is a blind spot. Truckers will also struggle to spot you if you are directly to the left of their trailer or in the two lanes to the right of their trailer. Staying out of those blind spots as much as possible can help you avoid a crash where a driver swerves into you without realizing it.
Merge and slow down with caution
It is dangerous to be in front of a commercial truck as well. They take longer than smaller vehicles to come up to traffic speeds and also longer to slow down. You need to leave adequate space between the rear end of your vehicle and the front of the commercial truck to protect yourself.
Merging too close to the front of a truck, especially if you fail to speed up quickly after merging, could lead to a preventable rear-end collision. Slamming on your brakes or slowing down quickly when you are directly in front of a commercial truck could also lead to a situation where they cannot stop in time and hit you from the back. These rear-end collisions can be particularly dangerous because the truck may override the smaller vehicle, causing catastrophic damage.