Posted On: October 20, 2006 by Christopher T. Hurley

Safety not a one way street

Unsafe driving by truckers and passenger car drivers contributes to the horrendous collisions we see on a daily basis on Amerca's superhighways.

Common behavior by truckers which frequently contributes to accidents includes:
· Driving Outside of the Designated Truck Lanes
· Failure to Respect Weather Conditions
· Aggressive Driving
· Driving While Impaired by Drugs, Alcohol or Fatigue
· Failure to Yield Right of Way
· Failure to Observe a Safe Following Distance

However, truckers do not bear all of the blame for these collisions. The actions of passenger vehicles can greatly increase the probability of collisions with trucks on the highway under the following circumstances:

· Failure to Respect the Trucker's Blind Spot - Trucks can have an enormous blind spot, and some post warning signs on the rear demonstrating the zone in which they cannot see a passing vehicle. Still, many drivers attempt to pass trucks as they attempt to turn or change lanes.
· Sudden Braking - Commercial trucks and tractor-trailers may require a considerable distance to stop, particularly when they are towing an empty trailer.
· Unsafe Lane Changes - Sudden lane changes in front of a truck, particularly while passing, can create risk of accident.
· Aggressive Driving - In a collision between a truck and a passenger vehicle, the passenger vehicle will lose. It is not wise to engage in aggressive driving techniques against a semi driver.
· Tailgating - Drivers who rear-end commercial trucks may find that the front of their vehicle passes below the truck, depriving them of the benefit of the front-end crumple zone and possibly causing the primary point of impact to be with the windshield, only a short distance from the driver's face. The metal bars welded to the back of a truck below the chassis are ostensibly meant to prevent underride, but are commonly called "guillotine guards" due to the number of decapitations they case. Underride accidents with commercial trucks can be deadly.

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