One of the learning experiences young drivers get at the StreetSafe Teen Driving program is the awareness of how dangerous driving near tractor trailers is. Old Dominion Freight sends a driver and his truck to teach the teens how to avoid one of the most dangerous situations they can experience on the highway. Participants climb into the truck to realize just how little these drivers can see around their rig. No pun intended but it is a real “eye opener”! Here are some tips for driving safely around tractor trailers that I thought all drivers should be aware of.
Stay Out of Truck Blind Spots or “No Zones”– Just as your car has blind spots, there are larger areas on both sides of a truck that the driver cannot see. If you cannot see their eyes in their mirrors, they cannot see you. Truck drivers can see more on the left side so it is best to pass them on the left and never just stay on the right side of a truck. Either slow down or pass them, then get out of their way.
Allow as Much Distance Away From Trucks as Possible– These large rigs can present many dangers from all directions. First, it takes up to 100 yards for a tractor trailer to stop (depending on it’s speed). When passing, do not pull into their lane until you can see their headlights in your rear view mirror. Give 20 to 25 car lengths between you and the truck when following. This will allow you to see ahead of the truck for any possible slow downs or stops in traffic. Never drive along side of a truck without passing. When tires blow, they become massive projectiles and can shoot right into your windshield.
Respect Big Trucks on the Highway– Always be extra cautious when you drive near tractor trailers. These trucks can weigh as much as 80,0000 lbs and are very difficult to control. It requires much more time to stop and more space to turn.
This is just one of the valuable lessons young drivers learn at StreetSafe. If you would like your teen driver to get the experience they need to become a safer, more responsible driver, go to www.streetsafeus.com to register for an upcoming event.
Check out our teen driving program here and let us help you get peace of mind knowing your teen is a safer driver plus get the right insurance protection at the lowest cost.