Accidents involving large trucks attract attention in the Cleveland area. Unfortunately, when coming up against an 80,000-pound big rig, a 3,000-pound car is at a noticeable disadvantage.

Truckers often go through mandatory training and certification to acquire their licenses, and many have years of experience driving around smaller vehicles, but that does not mean they are perfect drivers. Motorists and truckers alike can take precautions to prevent accidents when sharing the road.

How motorists can prevent accidents

Driving in truck traffic is different than driving among smaller vehicles. Motorists in truck traffic can do the following to make the road safer when driving around larger trucks:

  • Slow down when a truck passes you
  • Follow at a safe distance
  • Stay out of the truck’s blind spots
  • Avoid driving alongside the truck for extended periods
  • Give yourself plenty of time and space when passing a truck
  • Avoid cutting off a truck in traffic
  • Avoid passing on the right when a truck is making a right turn
  • Speed up when pulling into traffic in front of a truck

How truckers can help prevent accidents

Large trucks reduce motorist’s visibility of the road, and the noise of trucks can startle or distract drivers. Truck drivers can help to prevent accidents by:

  • Always double-checking mirrors before turning, passing or making another maneuver
  • Signaling early, giving motorists plenty of notice
  • Leaving extra room when possible when driving around smaller vehicles
  • Using designated truck parking areas
  • Staying alert – long hours on the road can dull your attention
  • Obeying laws mandating rest periods – after an accident, one of the first things police look at it is how long the truck driver has been on the road

What drivers can do after a crash

Chaos ensues after big rig accidents. People are quick to blame the other driver, but sometimes accidents happen. Motorists and truckers should both keep up with training, practice defensive driving and obey all laws. Drivers may wish to take every step to protect themselves before and after an accident.