Myths About Driving Near Trucks

Myths about Driving Near Trucks in Albuquerque

Many motorists have misconceptions about how to drive near an 18-wheeler.

Understanding how commercial trucks operate can go a long way to helping you keep yourself and your passengers safe while driving near big rigs on the road.

4 Common Truck Driving Myths

Some common myths about truck drivers include:

  • The elevated seating position and large mirrors on a truck give drivers a bigger field of view. In fact, trucks often have large blind spots that can stretch the whole length of the vehicle, far behind the truck, and sometimes into multiple adjacent lanes.
  • Truck drivers have the skill to make quick stops. Truck drivers can lose focus or attention on the road, just like anyone else. Even if a driver can quickly react to a situation, the momentum of a truck means it requires more time and distance to slow down and stop.
  • Truck drivers follow the same traffic laws as other motorists. Truck drivers actually have many more regulations and laws that they have to follow. This includes obeying lower speed limits, being restricted to right lanes on highways, and having to observe limits on the number of hours they can spend behind the wheel.
  • Truck drivers face the same risks of injuries as occupants of other vehicles in a truck accident. The force imparted by a truck on a smaller passenger vehicle is far greater than the force the smaller vehicle can impart on the truck. As a result, occupants of other vehicles involved in a truck crash face a greater risk of serious injury.

Differences Between Car and Truck Accidents

Car accident and truck accident cases have several important distinctions, including:

  • Truck accidents tend to involve more evidence due to the regulated nature of the trucking industry. Evidence may include driver logs, electronic data recorder information, load manifests, and maintenance records.
  • Truck accidents have more potentially liable parties, including the truck driver, the trucking company, the freight company, and the truck or parts manufacturer.
  • Getting full compensation in a truck accident claim can prove more complicated. This is due to the complex corporate structures and layered insurance coverages trucking companies use, making it difficult to determine the full extent of financial resources available for compensation.

Dangers of Driving Near Trucks

When driving near large commercial trucks, you should remember a few important safety tips to help keep yourself and the truck driver safe from a potential collision:

  • Never follow a truck too closely. You can never predict when a truck may brake or stop, especially since you may not be able to see traffic ahead of the truck. Trucks also have a blind spot directly behind the cargo area, meaning the driver may not see you. If you cannot stop in time to avoid colliding with the back of the truck, you may face the risk of serious injuries, as the floor of the trailer or cargo area may be located at your head level.
  • Never “brake check” trucks. Trucks cannot slow down as quickly as passenger vehicles, so brake-checking a commercial truck puts you at risk of a rear-end collision.
  • Pass trucks with caution. Trucks often have blind spots that stretch much of the length of the vehicle. If you pass a truck at highway speed, make sure you have room in front to fully pass the truck or move over to an adjacent lane if the truck driver decides to change over into your lane while you are passing.

Need a Truck Accident Lawyer? Contact Parnall Law Today

If you’ve been injured in a truck accident in New Mexico, contact Parnall Law today. Our dedicated truck accident lawyers will provide you with a free, no-obligation consultation to help you understand your legal options.

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