Accidents that involve a large truck or tractor trailer are considered some of the most common that occur on the road today. One of the primary causes of truck accidents is blind spots. While all types of vehicles have blind spots, there are some that certainly have larger blind spots than others. For example, tractor trailers have larger blind spots than most vehicles, which is why so many accidents occur when a truck changes lanes and doesn’t see a vehicle is next to it.
As a result, you always need to be aware of large trucks that are on the road with you and how you can remain safe.
Factors that Contribute to Big Rig Blind Spots in Truck Accidents
There are several factors that lead to large trucks having bigger blind spots than traditional passenger vehicles. This is because of several factors, which include:
- 18-wheelers are typically between 70 and 80 feet long, with the triple trailers being as long as 105 feet. In most cases, the driver will have extremely limited visibility on each side, and in the front and back.
- The truck’s height is so drastic that the driver may not be able to see a low-riding car.
- There are no rearview mirrors in trucks.
Tips for Avoiding No-Zones and Truck Accidents
Over 80 percent of all accidents that involve a truck are the fault of a non-commercial driver. As a result, the No-Zone program was introduced in 1994. This was created by the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) in order to teach other drivers how to share the roadway safely with large trucks and buses. According to information presented by the FMCSA, a No-Zone is an area where passenger vehicles virtually “disappear” from the truck driver’s view. These are the areas where accidents are most likely to occur.
Some advice to drive safely, offered by the American Trucking Association and No-Zone program, include:
- Never cut in front of a bus or large truck since these vehicles require more space to stop. Be sure you can see the whole frontend of the truck before moving into the lane.
- Don’t linger at the side of a large truck. Make sure you pass quickly so you don’t remain “invisible” to drivers.
- Always pass on the left-hand side (if possible).
- Stay back and provide trucks with a minimum of a four second following distance (this is approximately 20 passenger vehicle lengths).
The fact is, if you are driving on the road anywhere in America, you are going to have to get used to sharing the roadway with large trucks. After all, there are more than three million commercial trucks on the roads each year. Additionally, due to accidents, over 4,000 people suffer fatal accidents with large trucks annually.
If you are involved in an accident with a large truck, you need to hire an attorney to help you seek the monetary compensation you deserve. You can learn more about trucking accidents and how to remain safe while on the road by contacting the attorneys at Hilton & Somer, LLC by calling 703-560-0700.