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How to Share the Road with Semi Trucks: 10 Safe Driving Tips


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In traffic accidents between a semi truck and a passenger vehicle, many are quick to put the blame on the truck driver. But did you know about 80% of accidents are caused by the passenger car? With these safe driving tips, you can learn how to share the road with trucks so we can all get from point A to point B safely. View the full infographic here:

Published in: Automotive, Business, Education

How to Share the Road with Semi Trucks: 10 Safe Driving Tips

  1. 1. 10 Tipsfor Sharing the Road with Trucks
  2. 2. Avoid Blind Spots in Trucks
  3. 3. 413,000accidents caused by blind spots every year.
  4. 4. Semi trucks haveblindspots…
  5. 5. Directly in front of the trucks cab.1
  6. 6. Directly in front of the trucks cab.1Directly behind the trailer.2
  7. 7. Directly in front of the trucks cab.1Directly behind the trailer.2Along the driver’s side door and trailer.3
  8. 8. Directly in front of the trucks cab.1Directly behind the trailer.2Along the driver’s side door and trailer.3Along the passenger side door and trailer.4
  9. 9. 1/3of fatal accidents between apassenger vehicle & semi truckoccur in 1 of these 4 areas.
  10. 10. blind spots?So, what accidentscan happen in these(click the white links formore info on each topic!)
  11. 11. UnderridesThe car slides under the trailer when the truckbrakes suddenly.SideswipesThe truck swipes a passenger car when changinglanes.Rear end collisionsThe truck crashes into the back of your car whenyou brake too suddenly (or you crash into thetruck if following too closely).
  12. 12. If you can’t seeTHE DRIVER,he can’t see you.
  13. 13. Pass trucks safely to minimizethe potential for an accident.
  14. 14. DO:- Pass on the left side for maximum visibility.- Maintain a consistent speed.- Allow plenty of space between your car and the truckwhen you merge back over.
  15. 15. Don’t linger near trucks and their trailers. The area immediatelysurrounding a semi truck is the riskiest place you can drive in.A number of dangerous scenarioscan occur in this space…
  16. 16. TIRE BL WOUTSIf a semi truck blows a tire, shreds can fly throughyour windshield or under your car.Caused By:- Unglued re-treaded tires- Careless maintenance- Low tire pressure- Too much weight
  17. 17. ROLL OVERSIf a truck happens to roll over while you’re drivingnext to it, your car could get crushed.Caused By:- Carrying too much weight (top heavy)- Taking a curve too quickly- A heavy wind gust
  18. 18. UNDERRIDESIf a truck brakes quickly while you’re tailgating, yourcar could slide under the trailer.350people killed yearly inunderride accidents
  19. 19. RULE OF THUMB:Leave at least a 4 secondfollowing distancebetween your car andthe truck in order toprevent accidents.
  20. 20. Don’t cut off large trucks – it takes semistwice as long to stop as a passengervehicles.
  21. 21. perception distanceTotal Stopping Distancereaction distancebraking distance
  22. 22. Perception distance:The distance traveled before yourealize the need to brake. At 55 MPH, a truck will travel about 81 feet per second.Average perception time is about 3/4 a second.
  23. 23. Reaction distance:The distance traveled by thetime you move your foot to thebrake pedal. At 55 MPH, a truck will travel about 60 feet. Averagereaction time is about 3/4 a second.
  24. 24. Braking distance:The distance the vehicle travelswhile the brakes take effect. At 55 MPH, a truck will take anywhere from 300 to 390feet to stop – approximately 4.5 seconds.
  25. 25. Stopping Distance at 55 MPHAverage Car:5,000 pounds140 feet to stopAverage Semi Truck:80,000 pounds300 feet to stop (a fullfootball field)
  26. 26. Caution:This vehicle makes wide right turns.
  27. 27. Drivers must “swing wide” so theydon’t hit:- Curbs- Light poles- Othervehicles
  28. 28. Stay Back…Do not rush into this spacebetween the trailer and thecurb! You could end upwedged between the two witha crushed car.
  29. 29. Don’t rush into the space between the curb andtruck!Be predictable and practicepatience around largetrucks.
  30. 30. MOVING TOO SLOW?Most companytrucks aregoverned. Thismeans they cannotdrive faster than acertain speed;usually somewherearound 65 milesper hour. 65SPEEDLIMIT
  31. 31. Lower your brights near semis. The truck’slarge side mirrors reflect bright lights into thedriver’s eyes, causing momentary blindness.
  32. 32. A truck driver travels half the length of a footballfield in just two seconds of blindness at 55 mph
  33. 33. RULE OF THUMB:Dim bright lights whencoming within 1 block ofan oncoming truck orvehicle.
  34. 34. Signal sooner to give truckdrivers more time to prepare forwhat you’re about to do.
  35. 35. RULE OF THUMB:Signal for at least 3 secondsbefore you make yourmove.
  36. 36. Be cautious when merging in front of atruck. Adjust your speed to get in front ofor behind the truck since semis can’tspeed up and slow down as quickly asyou can.
  37. 37. When a Truck Tries to Pass You…- Decelerate slightly to minimize time needed forthe maneuver.- You can also turn your lights off and back on tosignal to the driver that he’s clear to come overinto your lane.
  38. 38. Pay attention – no distractions!
  39. 39. of fatal crashes in 2010 wereattributed to distracted driving.
  40. 40. In 2010, distraction contributed to…2/10crashes resulting ininjury9/10crashes resulting infatalities
  41. 41. COMMON DISTRACTIONS- Cell Phones (texting)- Daydreaming- Reaching for something/adjusting the radio- Rubbernecking
  42. 42. Final Thoughts:Practice these safe driving tips in order to makethe road a safer place. And remember, trucksare generally safer than cars. But a collisionbetween the two can be deadly, so it’simportant that we all know how to share theroad with semi trucks.
  43. 43. Images••