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Guidelines for Driving Safely around Large Trucks

highway and a truck

Semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, and other large trucks can cause a great deal of destruction in a collision. Due to the pressures placed on drivers to make excellent time on their drives, some drivers make compromises in the amount of rest they take or in their compliance with safety measures. While these factors cannot be controlled for by other drivers, there are other ways that you can take a part in preventing accidents with large trucks. Read on for tips on protecting yourself and your passengers from getting into crashes with large trucks.

Know where trucks’ blind spots are, and avoid them

Tractor-trailers have what are called “no-zones,” which are large blind spots located on the sides and rear of the truck, as well as the spot where the trailer connects to the truck. Although passing through a truck’s no-zones may be unavoidable, don’t linger there, as you run the risk of a collision should the truck merge into your lane when you aren’t visible to the driver. As the saying goes, if you can’t see the driver’s mirrors, the driver can’t see you.

Signal your turns and lane merges with plenty of notice

If you are planning to merge in front of a semi-truck, make sure that you begin signaling well before you change lanes, and avoid at all costs swerving abruptly in front of a large truck. A tractor-trailer that’s fully loaded with cargo requires up to 300 feet to come to a stop when at highway speeds. You should also make sure that the front of the truck is visible in your rear view mirror before you enter the truck’s lane.

Avoid getting “squeezed”

When making turns, especially on narrow streets, long vehicles require a wide radius. If you are between a truck and the curb while a truck is making a turn, then your vehicle could end up being “squeezed,” or crushed between the truck and the side of the road. Hang back when a truck has a turn signal on.

In the event of a crash with a large truck or semi, contact skilled Hudson Valley truck accident attorneys Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello for an evaluation of your claims.

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Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP, is located in Kingston, NY and Marlboro, NY and serves clients in and around Ulster County as well as parts of Orange, Dutchess, Columbia and Greene Counties as well as many surrounding areas.

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