That’s right—free advice on how you can stay safe on the road from the driving experts themselves! The internet is a bountiful place.
No matter where you’ve driven, you’ve probably encountered a semi out on the road. Even before the rise of online shopping, truckers were out on the road ensuring that groceries and other valuable commodities got delivered safely to the stores. But despite the ubiquity of trucks, many people don’t know the best practices for driving near them. Here are some tips that will help you keep safe if you’re driving near a truck.
- Don’t drive directly in front of a truck. Think about it: when a car stops abruptly in front of you, how hard do you slam on the brakes to stop in time? Now imagine you’re driving a much larger, longer, heavier vehicle—that’s going to need more time and space to brake, so you’re best leaving them some room.
- Turn your headlights on in inclement weather. It may have crossed your mind that turning your lights on doesn’t really help you see better when it’s raining or foggy. But it’s more about how well others can see you. Mirrors become much more difficult to see out of in inclement weather, but turning your lights on can help make you more visible.
- Don’t tailgate a truck. Didn’t your driving instructor teach you not to tailgate at all? Well, with trucks it bears extra repeating: don’t tailgate. If the vehicle experiences a tire blowout, the sound could startle you into a quick reaction. But more importantly than that, if the tire flies toward your car, it could seriously injure you.
- Accelerate when you need to get in front of a truck on the highway. Our RTS Lines driver Charlie told us, “I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had close calls because of improper merging.” Which means, don’t forget to check your mirror while merging, too!
- Adjust your departure time to avoid traffic. Ken, on our Night Ops team, was also a driver, and he has a simple solution: don’t want to drive next to as many trucks? Just schedule your activities around less busy times in traffic, and you won’t have to worry about it.
Basically, what all of this boils down to is: GIVE TRUCKS SPACE AND MAKE YOURSELF VISIBLE. It will work out better for you and for them.