No one wants to be involved in a serious accident on the road. However, if you end up in an accident with a large semi-truck, you could receive devastating injuries. In 2018, 4,136 people died in large truck accidents, 31% more than in 2009. And truck drivers weren’t completely at fault in all those accidents. Sometimes, passenger vehicle drivers are to blame.
In order to avoid an accident with a semi-truck, you can practice these five driving safety tips:
- Don’t spend much time close to a large truck when traveling.
Semis have large blind spots and drivers can forget your vehicle is there if you are spending a lot of time driving close the truck. Also, if the semi has a tire blow out, you will be safer if you have more space to maneuver around the truck and away from the tire.
- If you need to stop on the interstate or highway, pull as far as you can off the side of the road and put your hazard lights on.
You want to be very visible to any large trucks.
- When you pass a semi, do it as quickly as you can.
Also, make sure you have plenty of distance between your vehicle and the truck when you pass a semi. If you return to the same lane as a large truck, leave plenty of space behind you. It takes semis longer to stop completely because of their heavy weight. If you don’t leave enough space, a semi is more likely to rear-end you.
- Don’t drive distracted.
Put your phone away for your safety and for those in your vehicle. If you send a text while driving, that can take five seconds. At 55 miles per hour, your vehicle has traveled the length of a football field in that time. Driving distracted for that long easily can cause you to hit the back of a large semi-truck, and you are much more likely to receive serious injuries in that type of accident.
- Don’t use your high beams at night when you pass a large truck or are driving behind one.
Bright lights can temporarily blind a truck driver, increasing the chance of an accident.
Every day, Michigan drivers share the road with large commercial vehicles. By following these tips, you are more likely to arrive at your destination safely and avoid a serious crash with a large truck.