While traffic continues to stay light across Missouri, there is always a strong presence of truck drivers and their large vehicles on the highways. And for any passenger vehicle, it’s obvious how strong that presence is when you have to pass or drive next to a semi-truck.
However, commuters must do their part and share the road in a way that is safe and effective for everyone, including the truck drivers.
Simple tips for sharing the highway
- Know the blind spots – Like any other vehicle, semi-trucks have blind spots where the driver is unable to clearly see those areas. For commercial vehicles, it tends to be the rear end and the sideswipe on which side.
- Pass diligently – If you know of those blind spots, it helps you know when and how to pass a semi-truck when necessary. Make sure you are visible to the driver and maintain a consistent speed until you are ready to move over to the next lane.
- Do not linger near a semi-truck – Give trucks plenty of space to move and operate whenever possible. Do not hang around a semi-truck because several emergencies could happen at any moment, including a tire blowout or a rollover due to high winds.
- Pay attention – While drivers should always focus on the road, it’s especially crucial to pay attention near a semi-truck due to their large size and unpredictable nature. Avoid any distractions, including your phone, daydreaming or reaching for items.
- Practice patience – The most important tip is to practice patience. You do not want to speed or antagonize a truck driver as they perform their daily work. You want to be the best defensive driver possible to ensure that you and other drivers are safe while sharing the road.
Practice these tips, and if you still experience an accident with a truck driver, follow the same steps you would during a normal accident, except prioritize medical attention whenever necessary.