If a truck hits your car, it will do more damage than a smaller vehicle. Yet, it is not only the potential crash outcome that makes driving near trucks dangerous. The size of trucks could increase the risk of a collision in the first place.
Driving a truck is more challenging than driving a car. High-sided trailers are more prone to the wind blowing them over. The articulated nature of these rigs introduces possibilities of jackknifing, which cannot occur in a smaller vehicle. Yet, even if the truck driver masters these challenges, their rig can make the road more dangerous for others.
Trucks limit your ability to see
Anything that blocks your vision increases the chance you fail to spot a hazard or other vehicle and crash. When you drive alongside a truck, you have no clue what is on the other side or in front of it. When you sit too close behind, you cannot see what is in front or to the sides of the truck. It applies to you and all other drivers.
Here are some ways to reduce the risk that a truck blocks your view of the road:
- Leave more time when overtaking: Because trucks are so long, you may not realize another vehicle is in front of the truck. Because they are so high, you may not see another car joining the road on the far side of the truck and pulling into the space in front of the cab you were hoping to move into.
- Take extra care at junctions: You are at an intersection ready to move ahead when a truck crosses. Do not assume the road ahead will still be clear when the truck has passed. Leave time to check again before crossing behind the truck.
Understanding the dangers trucks pose can reduce the chance they or someone whose vision the truck obscured crashes into you and injures you.