The responsibility for sharing the roads in Texas belongs to all motorists, including both passenger vehicle drivers and large truck operators. According to GTG Technology Group, when an accident involving a truck and a passenger vehicle is due to driver error, data shows that truckers are far less likely to be at fault. Because they are in the larger vehicle and less vulnerable in a collision, truck drivers should use defensive driving techniques to prevent someone else’s mistake from being fatal.
TruckertoTrucker.com lists many techniques truckers can use to avoid an accident.
Although driver fatigue and distraction are often causes of truck driver error, they may also keep the trucker from taking evasive action quickly enough when another driver makes the mistake. Avoiding medications that cause drowsiness, getting plenty of sleep and turning off cellphones are ways to maintain the vigilance necessary for emergency maneuvers.
Motorists cannot be relied on to stay out of a trucker’s blind spots, which are called “no-zones” for good reason. Collisions between passenger vehicles and tractor-trailers occur in the blind spots in about a third of the incidents. Checking mirrors as a part of scanning the environment can alert a trucker to a car that is moving up quickly and may soon be in a no-zone.
Tailgating is dangerous for anyone, but large trucks need much more time to stop due to their size and weight. A safe following distance in normal conditions is about four seconds at speeds below 40 mph, and five when going faster. However, in adverse road conditions, heavy traffic and low visibility situations, more distance is often necessary.