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Tips on Sharing the Road with Semi Trucks

by Arthur Elk

Driving next to an 18-wheeler or other large semi truck can be scary, especially for new drivers or those driving very small vehicles. The drivers of these 18-wheeler trucks have large blind spots to the right and rear of the vehicle. There are additional, smaller blind spots on the right front corner and mid-left side of the semi truck.

Driving in these blind spots can be quite dangerous because the driver of the truck may not see you and attempt to merge lanes. If this happens and you get in an accident, you should consult with a truck accident lawyer in Ohio to determine if the driver of the semi truck was at fault. If you’re driving on a highway and drive up right next to a semi truck, it’s good practice to pass the truck quickly, but within the speed limit, to minimize the risk of driving in one of the truck’s blind spots.

You should also be careful not to be too close to a truck when it is reversing. Because of the truck’s large size, it is more difficult for the driver to reverse, and doing so may take several tries. If a semi truck hits you while reversing, you should seek the advice of a car accident lawyer to determine if you can get compensated for the accident. If the truck driver is liable, you may be able to get a settlement for any injuries and property damage that you sustain in the accident.

Share the Road

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration offers these tips to motorists:

  • Leave more space for trucks and buses. Truck and bus drivers leave extra room behind the vehicles they follow because it can take them twice as long as a car to stop. 
  • Pay attention – don’t get distracted. Stay focused! Using cell phones, navigation devices and even laptops while driving makes the roadways more dangerous. 
  • Avoid the "No Zone"Stay out of the “No Zone.” Drivers of large commercial vehicles must react faster than car drivers in emergency situations due to the size and weight of their truck or bus. Truck and bus drivers have huge blind spots around the front, back and sides of their vehicles, otherwise known as the No-Zone. Be safe and don’t hang out in the No-Zone.
  • Stay Alert. Pay close attention to the side effects of prescription and over-the-counter drugs. Coupled with fatigue or a distraction, prescription or over-the-counter drugs can be dangerous on the road, and potentially deadly.
  • Wear your seatbelt. Buckling your seatbelt is the single most important thing you and your passengers can do to save your lives in a crash. Be safe and always buckle up!