From country roads to city streets, big trucks are everywhere. The produce you see in the grocery store, the shoes on your feet, and the furniture you are sitting on, all traveled by semi-truck to reach the stores where we shop in Virginia. While many are grateful for the items they bring, sharing the road is a different story. According to the US Department of Transportation, in recent years, there have been more than 400,000 accidents involving big trucks.
Safety on the road is the responsibility of every driver, so here are a few tips to keep you safe around semi trucks in Virginia:
Stay in sight
Large trucks have many blind spots, so make sure you do not follow too closely behind or beside them. Hanging out on the right side of a truck, or close to the rear tires can be dangerous.
Never cut off a semi-truck
It takes trucks twice as long to stop or slow down when compared to a car. Cutting in front of a semi-truck can have fatal repercussions. Trucks do not have energy-absorbing bumpers like cars, and even a moment of distraction for a truck driver can lead to a collision. In every instance, when a car challenges a truck, the truck will always come out on top. According to the Department of Transportation, over 60 percent of truck accidents involve the front of a truck. To pass safely, make sure you can see the entire front of the truck before you enter their lane.
Obey the rules of the road
When merging onto a highway, give right-of-way to the large trucks. Slow down to enter the highway behind them, or make sure you have enough speed to merge in front of them without causing them to brake. On city roads, a truck has to make wide right turns, so pay attention to trucks signaling to go right, and stay away from their right side.
Keep your cool
Road rage often leads to poor choices in driving. Keep in mind that truck drivers are probably not trying to make you angry with their driving. Rather, take a moment and see what the driver is dealing with. Flashing your lights, making gestures, and tailgating only adds more danger to the situation.
If you are ever involved in an accident with a semi-truck in Virginia, contact our car accident attorneys at Shevlin Smith. We can help you through the recovery process. Call 703-721-4233, or complete the contact form at the top of this page.