Thanksgiving Road Trip? How to Drive Safety Around Large Trucks

November 14, 2018 | Blog

Millions of Americans road trip during the Thanksgiving holiday to see friends and family who live in different parts of the country. When you’re thinking about a long weekend and your upcoming Thanksgiving feast, it’s easy to overlook the dangers of driving.

This is especially true when you share the road with large commercial trucks, as anyone taking a road trip inevitably will. Fortunately, you can remain as safe as possible when you drive around semis and other large vehicles.

Here are ten tips for driving safely around large trucks, provided by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration:

  1. Stay out of a truck’s blind spots, also known as no zones. These areas are directly in front of a truck, directly behind a truck’s trailer, and to either side of the truck.
  2. Pass with care. Make sure you can see the truck driver in his or her mirror before you pass, and pass promptly. Make sure the truck is visible in your rearview mirror before you return to the right lane. Try not to pass trucks on a downhill stretch as they can pick up speed.
  3. Never cut off a large commercial truck.
  4. Never tailgate a large commercial truck. Doing so puts you at risk of a serious underride accident.
  5. Give trucks extra turning room. In some cases, a truck’s cab will swing wide while the trailer follows a tighter path. In addition, some drivers may even initiate a turn from the middle lane.
  6. Practice patience with large trucks, as they often have operating restrictions or speed limiters. Driving aggressively will not make a truck go any faster, but it will increase the risk of an accident.
  7. Always wear your seatbelt.
  8. Avoid distractions when you drive. Even taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds can lead to a severe accident.
  9. Don’t drive when you’re excessively tired, and take regular breaks.
  10. Never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

What to Do if You Are Involved in an Accident With a Large Commercial Truck

While following the above safety tips can reduce your risk of suffering an injury in a commercial truck accident, nothing can eliminate it altogether. In the unfortunate event that an accident this holiday season injures you, protect your legal rights by:

  • Calling 911 after an accident and making sure that the police respond to the scene
  • Making sure to document things like the name of the truck driver and any markings on the truck or its trailer indicating the company responsible for its operation
  • Trying to get contact information from eyewitnesses to the accident
  • Undergoing a thorough medical evaluation as soon as you can after the accident
  • Retaining a qualified lawyer immediately
  • Not talking to the insurance company

Call Indiana Personal Injury Attorney Merry Fountain Today for a Free Consultation

Indianapolis personal injury lawyer Merry Fountain is a skilled injury advocate. If you are looking for a truck accident attorney in the greater Indy area—Indianapolis, Carmel, Fishers, Westfield, Zionsville, Brownsburg, Avon, Kokomo, Lebanon—she’s here to help! Call her anytime at 1-888-242-HURT (4878), or simply click Tell Us About Your Case for a free consultation.