When a semi-truck or tractor trailer collides with a smaller vehicle it can have tragic consequences. Occupants of the car or pickup face significant physical and emotional trauma, property damage, paralysis, or death. If liable, truck drivers could be facing large fines, losing their license, and jail time.
Our trucking accident attorneys want truck drivers to remember these tips to help save the lives of motorists.
- Have a Plan
“Many driving experts preach the importance of ‘defensive driving.’ However, this indicates reacting to situations as they come up. This means you are not taking preventative measures to control your own actions,” says Scott Mann, trucking accident attorney. “It’s much safer to have a ‘good offense’ based on defensive driving techniques. Truck drivers need to be proactive and make safe decisions that prevent accidents, rather than reacting at the last second.”
- Following Distance
Semi-trucks and tractor trailers are massive vehicles, and it takes 100 yards at least to come to a complete stop. This is why the majority of trucking accidents are the result of following too close. Truck drivers should maintain 3 truck lengths (a 4-second interval) between themselves and another vehicle.
- Use Your Mirrors
“Semi-trucks are especially vulnerable to blind-spots, which is why truck drivers need to use their mirrors at all times,” says Mike Wyatt, trucking accident attorney. “Do not change lanes without making sure it’s absolutely safe to do so. If not, you will either collide with a vehicle in your blind spot, or swerve back into your own lane to find another vehicle waiting. Either way, it’s an accident waiting to happen unless you know precisely what vehicles are in the other lane and what is behind you.”
- Know Your Route
Truck drivers should check ahead for any inclement weather, road conditions, or construction on their route. Avoid hitting rush hour by planning ahead, and check a truck stop guide for fuel, food and rest areas. Knowing your route gives you a ready “escape plan” when emergencies arise, so you don’t put the lives of others in danger.
If you have been injured in a semi-truck accident, please call Mann, Wyatt & Tanksley Injury Attorneys for a free consultation. Our trucking accident attorneys are honored to assist in your full recovery!