Obviously, as the driver of the smaller vehicle, you are in a vulnerable position. The sheer size and force of a semi truck will outmatch even the biggest sport utility vehicles.
Still, there are certain measures you can take – even before your trip – to heighten your level of safety. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration advises the following as you prepare for a road trip:
- Ensuring the regular maintenance of your vehicle is up to par. This includes actions such as battery checks, tire rotations, oil changes and tune-ups. If you know you haven’t kept up on these things, have your vehicle undergo a mechanical check-up, just to be sure it’s road-ready and in good condition for an extended drive.
- Have your tires checked. This goes along with the first recommendation, but it’s something you want to keep an eye on throughout your trip. Another benefit of making sure your tires are properly inflated is that it will help to improve your gas mileage, and ultimately keep your fuel costs lower.
- Check your wiper blades. Note that they can be sensitive to summer heat, and this is not a function you want to be without if you’re caught in a sudden storm. Install new ones before you go if yours aren’t in top shape.
- Make sure your lights are all functional and bright. If you’re hauling a boat or recreational vehicle, make sure the rear lights are working properly.
If you’ve done all this, you’re in good shape.
The next thing to keep in mind is that when you’re sharing the road with large trucks, you should familiarize yourself with where the trucker’s blind spot may be and avoid those areas for any extended periods of time.
Additionally, take the following to heart:
- Don’t crowd a tractor trailer. These vehicles tend to need more time to stop and pull other emergency maneuvers.
- Recognize that semi truck tire blow-outs are more common than you might think. As best you can, safely pass or avoid driving near trucks when possible.
- Pass on the left whenever possible, as there are more blind spots on the right. Hug the outside part of the lane as you do this.
- Understand that trucks make wide turns. Avoid cutting onto the side of trucks, particularly on the right.
Know that if you are involved in a serious truck accident in Georgia, you may be entitled to compensation and we are ready to help you get it.