Do you regularly drive on the interstate or highways around Fresno and the Central California Valley area? Does sharing the road with these extremely large trucks make you nervous? It should! The difference in size and weight between your vehicle and a commercial truck significantly increases your risk of injury and death in a commercial truck accident.
Commercial Truck Accidents Hurt Others on The Road
According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), fatalities in large truck accidents actually decreased by two percent from 2013 to 2014; however, injuries increased that year by 17 percent. During 2014, large truck accidents claimed 3,903 lives and injured an additional 111,000 people. Unfortunately for the drivers of other vehicles, the clear majority of those deaths and injuries were occupants of other vehicles.
Out of the 438,000 large truck accidents in 2014, over 70 percent of the deaths and injuries were to occupants of other vehicles. In these crashes, 73 percent of the fatalities were people in other vehicles, and 74 percent of the injuries were sustained by people in other vehicles. These statistics highlight the danger large truck accidents pose to others on the road. While drivers of passenger vehicles cannot control what truck drivers do, they can take precautions to try to avoid large truck accidents.
What Can Drivers Do to Avoid Large Truck Accidents?
In addition to decreasing distractions and avoiding impaired and drowsy driving, drivers of passenger vehicles can follow these safety tips to decrease their risk of being involved in a commercial truck accident:
- Changing Lanes – Commercial trucks cannot stop on a dime. The weight and size of a commercial truck make it very difficult for the driver to take immediate action to stop or swerve to avoid a car. Therefore, if you are changing lanes in front of a large vehicle, make sure you leave extra room between you and the truck before changing lanes in front of the vehicle. Leaving extra room allows the truck driver the time he needs to stop if something should go wrong when you are changing lanes.
- Pass on The Left Side of The Truck – If you are passing a large truck, try to pass on the left side. The driver can see you much better if you are passing on the left side because he has fewer blind spots on that side of the truck.
- Stay Out of Blind Spots – Large trucks have many blind spots. Knowing the blind spots and how to avoid them can mean the difference between being involved in a large truck accident and avoiding a truck accident. The driver cannot see you when you are in a blind spot. Therefore, when you must enter a blind spot, you need to move as quickly and safely as possible through the blind spot.
- Avoid Driving Beside Trucks – Trucks are top heavy; therefore, they are susceptible to turnovers in high winds, speed, and other conditions. Avoid driving beside a truck whenever possible.
- Allow More Space for Turning Trucks – Trucks require much more space to turn. If you see a large truck turning, you need to put more space between you and the truck. Never pass a truck that is attempting a turn.
Hire a Fresno Truck Accident Attorney
If you have been injured in a commercial truck accident, hire an experienced Fresno truck accident attorney as soon as possible. Insurance companies and trucking companies move fast to defend accident claims. You need a team of legal professionals on your side when going up against these companies.
Call the Fresno truck accident attorneys of Torem & Associates at 1-800-954-4444 for a free consultation. You may also use our online contact form to schedule a free case evaluation. It does not cost you anything to get an attorney’s advice.