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How drivers can reduce their risk of a semi-truck collision

Most people feel anxious when they notice a semi-truck near them in traffic. The brain instinctively understands that larger vehicles are a threat to personal safety. How someone behaves in traffic can slowly change when they have shared the road with semi-trucks for years and never had any major issues arise. People become complacent and focus less on safety recommendations.

A large percentage of the crashes that occur between passenger vehicles and semi-trucks are technically the fault of the larger vehicle. Still, there are certain safety rules that can decrease the likelihood of a passenger vehicle contributing to a crash with an 18-wheeler. Drivers who embrace the safety tips below can potentially reduce their risk of a collision with a semi-truck.

Know and avoid big truck blind spots

The overall height, width and length of semi-trucks make them very difficult to look around in traffic. Commercial drivers sometimes have additional mirrors installed to help them better check their blind spots. Even then, they may be unable to properly monitor their surroundings in traffic. Drivers in smaller vehicles often need to avoid the lanes directly to the left or right of a semi-truck’s trailer. They also need to use great care when passing a semi-truck, as they can’t effectively see around it in traffic.

Leave more space at intersections

Approaching an intersection at the same time that a semi-truck does or when there is a semi-truck already stopped requires different conduct from drivers. They may need to stop farther back from the intersection to give the truck the space it requires to complete a turn. Failing to do so could potentially lead to a preventable crash.

Take care when merging and passing

Another way that drivers put themselves at risk of a crash is by cutting too close in front of a semi-truck in traffic. It takes longer for big vehicles to slow down and stop, so drivers need to leave more space when they merge in front of semi-trucks or pass them. Maintaining higher speeds can also help ensure that the semi-truck doesn’t rapidly gain on the passenger vehicle and strike it from behind.

While these safety tips won’t eliminate the possibility of a semi-truck collision, they can help someone reduce their personal risk. If a crash does occur, those involved in semi-truck collisions may require assistance as they look into filing a commercial insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit against those who have caused them harm.