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Commercial trucks weigh an average of 20 times more than passenger vehicles. And so, when they are involved in an accident, the implications are exceptionally severe. That’s why it is so important that drivers of all types, professional or not, take extra precautions when driving near a big rig. In this article, we’ll look at how truck drivers and passenger car drivers might cause an accident. Remember, that even the most seemingly minor errors could end in catastrophe.

Causes of truck accidents at the fault of passenger vehicle drivers:

  1. Not considering a truck’s unique characteristics. A passenger vehicle driver may be ignorant of a truck’s capabilities. For example, they may underestimate the time they require to come to a complete stop or to accelerate. This is also dangerous in miscalculations of a truck driver’s visibility.
  2. Driving in ‘blind spots.’ There are particular areas behind, in front, and beside a commercial truck that are entirely invisible to the truck’s driver. So, passenger car drivers should avoid these as much as possible to stay visible and safe.
  3. Abruptly changing lanes in front of the truck. Trucks are significantly heavier than passenger vehicles. And so, they can not as quickly stop when a car cuts in front of them.
  4. Being in the way of a truck changing lanes. Changing lanes in traffic is no easy task if you’re 80 feet long. So, when passenger vehicles must be mindful of getting out of the path of a truck changing lanes.
  5. Unsafe passing. Passing a semi-truck should be done with sufficient caution and headway. Trucks are less agile and quick, so drivers must be able to anticipate the actions of surrounding vehicles.
  6. Improperly merging into traffic. Quickly merging or changing lanes without one’s signal could disrupt a truck, forcing them to maneuver and brake or accelerate quickly. Remember, trucks best operate with plenty of warning.

Causes of truck accidents at the fault of commercial truck drivers:

For the most part, professional truck drivers are skilled, experienced, and patient. However, there are a few inherent dangers associated with the truck driving industry that might lend to the hazards of the trucks’ size and weight.

  1. Inadequate training. While most professional drivers are thoroughly trained, in the case that they are insufficiently prepared could be extremely dangerous. They ought to be well aware of proper driving techniques, safety concerns, and defensive driving skills.
  2. Incentives to speed. The system of compensation for most truck drivers pays per mile driven. This encourages employees to cover as many miles as possible, and therefore to push the pace, skip breaks, and drive without necessary precautions.
  3. Unsafe driving schedules. Despite known safety risks, many trucking companies will encourage their employees to push schedules beyond their limits. Delivery deadlines are too often unrealistic and consequently dangerous for drivers.

Truck accidents are more often catastrophic than those just involving passenger vehicles. So, be sure that with every trip down the highway to take extra safety measures around trucks. Together, we can prevent such life-threatening car accidents. And if you or a loved one are involved in an accident involving a semi, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at Peach and Weathers for expert legal counsel and advocacy. We are prepared to meet your needs in this exceptional time of hardship with a combined 60 years of experience. Contact us today!

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