Vehicle Accidents -

How to Pass a Semi-Truck: Tips from T. Madden & Associates, P.C.

Every driver on the road needs to keep safety in mind. In fact, you owe this duty to the other drivers as much as they owe it to you. While truck drivers also have this duty, you can avoid getting into an accident with a semi-truck by learning a few tips on how to safely pass one. 

Truckers are supposed to go through extensive training, but even a well-trained truck driver with years of experience cannot do anything about a distracted driver in a passenger car. Additionally, semi-trucks have large blind spots, so even if you are paying attention, you may not realize you’re driving where a trucker can’t see you. 

When it comes to sharing the road with semi-trucks, it’s essential to know how to pass them safely and responsibly. T. Madden & Associates, P.C. is a law firm with extensive experience representing victims of semi-truck accidents. In this blog post, we provide you with the tips you need to safely navigate the busy Georgia roads alongside semi-trucks.

Tips on How to Safely Pass a Semi-Truck

There are challenges with passing other cars on the road, but the large size of semi-trucks makes it even more essential to master passing them safely.

Understanding the Mechanics of Large Trucks

A semi-truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when it is fully loaded with cargo. Due to the large size of trucks, it will take them much longer to come to a stop. If you cut in front of a truck, they may not be able to brake in time to avoid an accident. 

Keep a Safe Distance

It’s important to avoid making sudden moves that could put you and the truck driver in jeopardy. You must maintain a safe distance between your vehicles when you need to pass a truck. Even if you are not attempting to pass, leaving enough space can save you if something unexpected happens, such as if a truck driver swerves to avoid debris in the road.

Stay Out of the Truck’s Blind Spot

Semi-trucks have bigger blind spots than passenger vehicles, and the biggest is on the right side. This is why traffic laws urge drivers to pass on the left rather than the right because it is safer. Truck drivers also have trouble seeing you if you are directly in front of the cab or right behind the trailer. Now that you know, make sure you avoid lingering in these spots so you remain visible to the truck driver.

Use Proper Signaling

One of the most important steps in how to safely pass a semi-truck is using your turn signals. Along with avoiding blind spots, this helps communicate your intentions to the truck driver and allows them to prepare for your merging into their lane.

Make Your Move Quickly

Once the truck driver has seen you and you’ve signaled that you intend to pass the truck, make your move when the way is clear. You should also move a little towards the exterior of the lane rather than closer to the truck as you prepare to enter the truck’s lane.

Be Mindful at Night

When driving on a highway at night, make sure you don’t have your brights on as they can temporarily blind the trucker. As you approach semi-trucks on the highway, adjust your headlights to turn off the brights until you have safely passed the truck.

Photo of trucks driving

What to Do If You Are Involved in a Georgia Semi-Truck Crash

Sometimes, the best safe driving practices may not be enough to prevent a crash with a semi-truck. Another driver may have behaved negligently, causing the truck driver to run into your vehicle. The trucker may have been texting while driving or an unsecured roadway sign could have rolled into the road, causing the truck driver to react.

There are many reasons that truck accidents occur, and while knowing how to safely pass a semi-truck can help you avoid these situations, it may not stop every crash. If you were in a truck accident, you should learn more about your legal options through our truck accident lawyers. We offer free consultations that can help you decide the next steps to take. 

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