Truck drivers and dangerous lane changes
November 6, 2019
One of the biggest hazards that you face when driving around a semitruck is that the driver is going to make an unsafe lane change and hit your car.
We’ve all been there. You’re driving down the interstate in New Jersey. A truck driver refuses to move over to the right, so all of the cars start going around on the right and then moving back to the left. You follow suit. You look at the back of the truck before you pass, and the blinker isn’t on. But, as you pass, you suddenly have no idea if that blinker came on or not.
What if the driver finally decides to move to the right, doesn’t see you in the lane, and slams into the side of your car? What if the driver suddenly sees the exit coming up on the side of the road and makes a hurried change without checking the blind spot or signaling at all? You feel your heart begin to pound until you get around the truck and back into the normal traffic.
Two things work against you in a situation like this. The first is the truck’s blind spots. They’re huge. They exist on every side of the truck. You pass through one as you go by the truck. You likely pass through more than one.
Some drivers are vigilant and always check their mirrors. Others do not. No matter what type of driver you pass, the blind spots can make it so he or she can’t see you. It’s a huge risk and it does lead to accidents.
The second thing that works against you is that the truck driver may be on a strict schedule. They cannot be late. Their entire job revolves around getting the work done on time.
Plus, truck drivers often get a payment that ties to how many miles they cover. They know well that they’re only legally allowed to drive so many hours per day. This makes it so that they need to get the most out of each and every mile.
That mindset is dangerous. If the driver misses the exit, how much time to do they lose? Will they be late? Will they earn a lot less money that day? They might feel pressure to make a quick, unsafe merge into your lane because they literally have money riding on it. Unfortunately, it is you who pays the price.
After the crash
Hopefully, you can avoid serious truck accidents resulting in catastrophic injuries. Unfortunately, not everyone can. These accidents do happen, and they claim lives every year. If you lose a loved one or if you suffer serious injuries in such a crash, make sure you know what legal steps you can take.