18-wheelers, as you may have guessed from their name, are the huge trucks that nobody can miss on the nation’s highways. They’re massive, intimidating, and vexing when they use their size to dominate other motorists at a slower pace. However, they may also be deadly. It’s not only fatal; it’s also incredibly costly. And, as more big rig drivers enter the roadways each year, the statistics for injuries and fatalities are going up every year. When sharing the highways with these enormous truck trailers, you must exercise caution and common sense. You have a lot of alternatives when it comes to dealing with bodily injuries. Whatever works for you is the way to go, but be sure you choose the correct one because making an incorrect decision may end up costing you more in the long run than any other choice.
The average length of an 18-wheeler varies considerably depending on the type of cab and the number of trailers being towed. The typical length is 70-80 feet. If that isn’t enough, consider the legal weight of an 18-wheeler: 80,000 pounds. Stacked up against a sedan, it’s no contest. That’s why, when you’re driving and encounter an 18-wheeler, whether it’s alongside, in front of, or behind you, remember those odds and give them plenty of room. Do not follow an 18-wheeler in an adjacent lane; that is the most common mistake. Even crossing into your lane, a heavy load on a single- or two-trailer rig frequently rocks from side to side. They have the ability to cause a major failure and lose control, as well as being extremely dangerous and having a high potential of jack-knifing and sweeping everything out in an emergency stop.
However, vehicle accidents aren’t always the fault of the driver. If you don’t know how to drive and maneuver large vehicles, it’s easy to blame others. Automobile drivers cause hazardous situations by prohibiting big trucks from moving ahead in traffic, forcing the driver to brake hard or swerve with potentially deadly outcomes. Here are safe and courteous driving habits to practice when encountering an 18-wheeler:
- Avoid texting behind the wheel and other distractions within your car. Reaction time is everything, and you can get the most by focusing entirely on the road.
- Don’t drive alongside the 18-wheeler as you may be in their blind spot.
- Be aware of the truck’s movements or movement indicators like blinkers.
- Never, ever tailgate.
- Double the amount of distancing you would normally have during bad weather.
- Watch for bridges, inclines, sharp turns, and other terrains on the road that the 18-wheeler may take time navigating. Remember to be patient with them.
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