Winter driving in the Midwest can be daunting for even experienced drivers. Inclement weather can create icy or snowy road conditions, and December can mean congested roadways for those who are travelling for the holidays. Add in the thousands of delivery trucks trying to deliver holiday packages and getting to your destination safely can be difficult.
November and December are the busiest months for commercial truck drivers, which means you’ll be seeing them on the road more frequently. How can drivers stay safe while sharing the road with big rigs in slick conditions?
Avoid driving in blind spots
Because of their size, trucks have several different blind spots. Avoid driving within 10 feet directly behind the truck or on the sides just behind the cab, where truck drivers can’t see you. This could create a dangerous situation if it’s icy out and the truck stops suddenly or tries to merge.
Avoid cutting off trucks
When changing lanes, it can be easy to think you have enough space to slide in front of a truck. It’s important to remember that trucks are heavy, and they need extra time to stop safely. If a car cuts off a truck, the truck could be forced to stop suddenly, which in turn could cause it to jackknife and crash.
Leave earlier than planned
Whether your destination is a sporting event or your relatives’ house, plan on leaving early if the roads are slick. Getting a head start will ensure you don’t feel rushed when you’re on the road, especially when driving near slower delivery trucks. Driving carelessly can increase chances of skidding on ice or affect your ability to brake in time.
Brush off snow and ice from your vehicle
Before you leave your house, be sure to remove any snow or ice on your car. If you don’t, chunks may break off when you’re driving and hit the vehicle behind you or fall on the road, causing drivers to swerve and potentially cause an accident.
Give trucks and other vehicles space
When the weather is inclement, you’ll want to ensure you give yourself and other vehicles plenty of space. Traveling a safe distance away from the vehicle in front of you ensures you have time to brake and react to situations around you. Avoid riding the bumper of the car or truck in front of you, as it could be dangerous if that vehicle stops suddenly.
If you get in a car accident, it may not be your fault. An attorney with experience fighting commercial delivery trucks can help you achieve the best outcome.