Many Connecticut drivers feel instinctive apprehension when a large truck appears in the mirror. This reaction has a solid basis to it: commercial trucks can present some specific dangers that ordinary passenger vehicles do not.
Identifying and learning how to minimize the risks from these dangers can go a long way towards keeping you safe on your commute. Unfortunately, accidents can happen anyway, often due to the negligence of other drivers. If you are involved in a car accident, speaking with an experienced attorney can give you more information about your potential case.
The first thing you notice about a truck is that it is quite large; in fact, so large that it blocks a great deal of the view. When a truck is in front of you, its size can prevent you from seeing what is happening ahead. Its size also makes the truck harder to maneuver and can lead to situations such as jackknifing, especially on a slippery road.
The truck’s size also limits the view of its driver, making passing a truck a complicated task. Take a quick look at the truck driver’s side mirror; if you cannot see him or her, you are not visible either. Try to stay out of blind spots, signal clearly before you move into the left lane and pass as quickly as is safe.
Inertia and stopping distance
Due to a commercial truck’s weight, it has longer stopping distances than other vehicles. It is wise to put some extra distance between yourself and a truck traveling ahead of you or behind you. While you should avoid cutting in front of any type of vehicle, be especially careful to avoid doing this with a large truck.
Cargo can increase damage
A truck’s cargo can pose hazards to motorists as well. If it has been poorly secured, it can fall or roll off, colliding with other cars on the road. Trucks may also carry toxic or flammable materials, which can severely escalate any damage that happens in a crash.